Do you have your Christmas Campaigns Built & Ready to Launch?
Having spent 90% of my career in the B2B marketing space, I always look to my B2C colleagues with a little envy as we approach the Christmas season with their cool campaigns, extensive marketing opportunities and general fun associated with Christmas.
At the end of the day, we B2B marketers host Christmas parties that hopefully include customers and prospects and maybe we’ll run a campaign to advise office hours and we do it really well – right?
However, is there more we can do over the Christmas season to stay engaged with our prospects and customers?
Some Suggestions for the Oracle Marketing Cloud B2B Modern Marketer
1. Get the Basics Taken Care of in October
The easiest campaign to set-up now, avoiding last-minute panic on the 20th of December is your office hours during the Christmas and New Year period. Create your segment in Oracle Marketing Cloud (previously known as Eloqua). Build your emails, you may want to include a reminder email for those who don’t open the first email.
When you create your segment and associate it with the campaign on the Oracle Marketing Cloud Campaign Canvas, be sure to select “Add Segment Members: Hourly until campaign is deactivated“. This ensures Oracle Marketing Cloud sends your email to any new contacts added to Oracle Marketing Cloud or your CRM (if integrated) between now and Christmas.
Remember your can forward date the launch date of your campaign regardless of when you activate it.
2. The Employee & Customer Christmas Party
Oracle Marketing Cloud makes your life easy when it comes to event management. You can create segments within Oracle Marketing Cloud for employees, partners and customers. You may want to tailor the invitation to each of those groups via three separate emails, however they can all be included on the one Campaign Canvas to give you a single place for reporting and RSVP management. If you include a “+1” on your event registration form you may also pick up a few extra contacts from Customers or Partners as they bring colleagues to your Christmas party.
3. The December Newsletter
Plan now in October for the final newsletter for the year. It’s likely to be a slightly more casual communication and if you have legal hoops you have to jump through for your outbound communications, some lead time for any “Christmas” cheer articles may be required. You could use this final newsletter to repeat some of your highlights from the year. It’s also a chance to be a little more relaxed and it could be worth including some humour.
If your CEO is open to the idea, perhaps you could Photoshop a Christmas hat onto his/her official company portrait and include it in the newsletter with an end of year thank you message.
CLICK HERE to read a recent blog post from Oracle Marketing Cloud about the use of humour in your campaigns.
4. Get Social Over Christmas
For many Australian businesses, the Christmas period is very slow with key contacts on annual leave and away from the city or overseas for a much-needed break. Social media provides a fun casual way for you to engage with those who are currently following you on your various social properties. Using photo’s to enhance your posts, why not create a character e.g. use a Santa stuffed toy or other relevant character and post light-hearted messages with photographs over the period.
Think outside the box about how you can remain relevant to your follows, fans and subscribers over the Christmas/New Year period.
Using a Social Relationship Management platform can help you automate these posts at predetermined times and dates making sure you have a drip feed approach to your engagement. Keep in mind, community managers will need to be on hand to respond and engage with possible inbound communications.
5. What About Your Automated Nurturing Campaigns?
This requires some thought. You could suspend/deactivate your Oracle Marketing Cloud campaigns in mid December and then reactivate them in mid January. It would be worthwhile to look at the contacts currently included in your nurturing campaigns and then make an informed decision about what to do.
There wouldn’t appear to be much value having your well structured and thought through nurturing campaign content delivered when 90% of them will soft bounce with out of office notifications.
6. Cultural & Ethnic Sensitivity
You may want to think carefully about how you present Christmas messages to your intended audience. You will most likely have a wide-ranging group of people from vast cultural backgrounds. As a non-Christian country, Singapore is a great example of a country who has adopted the Christmas season with all the trimmings. After Goggling “Orchard Road Christmas” I came up with thousands of images, the one below is just one great example.
At the end of the day, make smart choices about how you share your Christmas message, an inclusive message covering many cultures and religious groups is generally a safe bet. Personally I avoid the “Happy Holidays” concept which is void of any substance and seems more driven by greeting card companies.