Do not be surprised by how quickly brands will start launching their holiday campaigns once the last slice of pumpkin pie from the Thanksgiving feast has been claimed. Chances are, companies whipped up their social media campaigns weeks or even months ago.
However, if you are still scrambling to come up with a brilliant holiday marketing strategy, it would be a merry idea to revisit successful hashtag campaigns of Christmases past to help get you into the spirit:
1.#HolidayBuds by Budweiser
The concept was simple, really. Tag a friend who you wanted to be Budweiser buds with. And just like that, the #HolidayBuds campaign took off, trending and gaining momentum both online and offline. It helped that their limited edition vintage packaging was a huge hit with the millennial market.
2.#12DaysofPuppies by L.L. Bean
Adorable puppies with just about anything are pretty much a recipe for success. Who can resist them? L.L. Bean’s #12DaysofPuppies is notably one of the most engaged-around posts of all time, with each post receiving thousands of likes and hundreds of comments.
And this year, they’ve launched the #LLBeanPuppyContest, giving your beloved pups a chance to be featured on their social media pages and win a $50 L.L. Bean gift card.
3. #SantaProject by Macy’s
Do you believe in Santa? Macy’s took to social media to call on all believers to post their Santa stories and messages, sparking people, young and old, to dream again and let go of the cynicism that was beginning to surround the beloved holiday. It worked because it not only ignited and strengthened family traditions but kept the magic of the holidays alive by using an iconic Christmas figure to remind us to be just as generous and giving. Celebrities like Ryan Seacrest and Miss Piggy even took part.
4.#MyKindofHoliday by Target
The hashtag leaped out of the digital realm and was printed on everything from catalogs to newspaper inserts. It grabbed its audience’s attention by offering them a personalized holiday shopping experience, encouraging people to share their unique holiday traditions that may or may not have been “traditional.”
5.#HotelTonight Visit, Don’t Stay by Hotel Tonight
While one of the best ways to win people’s affections is to tug at their heartstrings, Hotel Tonight’s #HotelTonight was a huge hit by being humorously honest. The holidays have always been about family togetherness. However, not everyone looks forward to being crammed with 17 other family members in their cousin’s home nor is anyone excited to sleep on an inflatable mattress in grandma’s den.
Hotel Tonight went against tradition by encouraging people to book last minute hotel rooms via its app or mobile site instead of subjecting themselves to staying at an already overflowing relative’s home or spending more time with a particularly chatty aunt that you would otherwise avoid the rest of the year. After all, we may love our extended family unconditionally, but there’s no need to test to what extent.
And the fun part? People started to get involved as they competed by explaining reasons why they would rather not spend the night at a family member’s house. And the best (or should we say, worst) reason winning Hotel Tonight credits.