I'm writing this on a very hot (30+) day in September.
But right now photographers are busy shooting Chritsmas promotions.
Copywriters and designers are putting the finishing touches to Christmas brochures.
And you?.. What are you doing?
I'd like to urge you to think about making a charity's Christmas video.
THINK BACK TO LAST YEAR
For the second year running, Sainsbury's wanted us to remember 'Christmas Is For Sharing'.
(Preferably their Christmas advert with all of your social media connections.)
They dedicated their main Christmas advert to the message of sharing. To benefit not themselves, but a chosen charity and cause...
Have a watch, then read below to find out how your business can share the love too.
Here, they only show us their logo right at the end as we're glowing in the positive emotion the film has given us and they fleetingly tell us they're supporting Save The Children and child literacy.
John Lewis took a similar angle with their Man On The Moon ad bringing Age UK to the fore once you went to their website.
I like it... but your business can do better.
WHAT CAN YOU DO?
Use your marketing budget, whatever it may be, to help make a video for a charity instead.
DO IT FOR CHARITY!
If you have the cash to spare and the heart to give, why not offer to fund a video of a charity‘s christmas Santa fun run, Santa’s visit to a hospice, you get the idea. Ask everyone in your office which local charity should benefit, pick one and contact them; ask how you can help. Do it soon.
It doesn't have to be 'epic' but it does have to be genuine.
You will make a difference to the charity and those featured will feel special and to a certain extent it may go viral on a local level and if that’s where your market is, brilliant. Just have your name at the end, or if appropriate subtley in the background during it (I’m talking a volunteer wearing a xmas hat with your logo on it, or balloons, not a giant billboard)… the key is.. this isn’t about you. You may benefit yes, but that shouldn’t be why you do it or it’ll backfire. Doubtless the charity will also mention you in their newsletter, blog, own social media, maybe even local press. Think about it: loads of people sharing a heartwarming video online that benefits that charity, but that you played a part in?
Of course this shouldn't be your only marketing spend for Christmas if your business benefits from seasonal trade. But it will sure feel like the nicest part of your budget. It also means any business can do something in the spirit of Christmas: so businesses like solicitors, accountants, estate agents... you know, the ones with no particular spending boost linked to Christmas, just because no one's thinking of them, doesn't mean they can't think of somebody else.
DO GOOD, LOOK GOOD
This example was part of a post I wrote on 7 Stylish Ways Barber Shops Can Use Video... it isn't from one particular salon, but rather a united effort of stylists from a local community. They joined together to give haircuts to the homeless one Sunday at their busiest time of year... just before Christmas.
This documentary style feature is a special heart warming video that reflects well on all of the people and companies involved.
If you do this, please share it with me, I'd love to know. And if you need any help throwing some ideas around, get in touch. Bring mince pies.
Come on.. Christmas is for sharing.
**This post was originally posted for Winter 2015 and has been updated for Christmas 2016 - Festive marketing, it's the content gift that keeps on giving**