Major holidays can be great revenue generators for small businesses, but advertising in these highly-competitive and crowded periods of the year can be tough for the smaller advertisers. During Black Friday, Christmas, Valentine’s Day or even the Fourth of July, competing with major retailers eats up your budget before you know what’s happening, and their flashy, professional ad campaigns can overshadow more authentic, economically-priced advertising ventures.
There’s more to celebrate every year than just the major national holidays, though. Your calendar contains over 1,500 national days, weeks and months of observance that are much more affordable for small businesses to build successful creative around. You’ve likely heard of some of the more popular days, such as National Coffee Day (September 29th), National Dog Day (August 26th) or National Pie Day (March 14th). With so many days, weeks and months, you can bet that there’s a holiday that is perfect for your business.
The Advantages of Marketing Around a Niche Holiday
Building an ad campaign around one of these lesser-known holidays comes with many advantages for businesses working with a modest marketing budget.
Cost: Media inventory around major holidays is both competitive and limited, making prices skyrocket for ad space during these time periods. Meanwhile, no one is fighting over National Chocolate Pudding Day, which takes place on June 26th. Once you find the perfect holiday for you and your brand, you can almost have it to yourself since larger businesses see no reason to direct ad spend towards these little known and underappreciated days of the year.
Engagement: Quirky or strange holidays just make people smile. Consumers see hundreds of ads every day, so it’s fun to see something different and unexpected. When people enjoy your creative, they are more likely to tune in to your message and remember your brand in the future. These niche holidays give you an opportunity to engage with your audience in unconventional ways. For example, you could encourage high fives with your customers on National High Five Day (April 18th), or your business could stay open late on Chant at the Moon Day (August 15th).
Attention-Grabbing: Like a street performer or a magician, you want to draw people in. A good way is to deliver an experience that is creative and perhaps a little sensational. For instance, did you know there is an annual day of celebration for chaos and disorder known as Pandemonium Day? It takes place on July 14th, and we aren’t entirely sure how one celebrates this day, but we are willing to give it a try. Think about how one of the many national holidays can align with your business in an interesting and exciting way.
When planning your creative and campaigns around a unique day, you can use a variety of channels and tactics.
Paid Social or Search Engine Marketing (SEM): You can create a special digital campaign around the upcoming event and generate traffic from people searching for that holiday. On social media platforms, hashtags can also be beneficial in sharing information and joining the conversation online. Say you are a plus size clothing boutique; National Plus Size Appreciation Day, celebrated every year on October 6th, is perfect for your business. You can show your love and appreciation online with the hashtag #PlusSizeAppreciationDay and let potential customers know you’re here to support and cater to them.
Sales, Promotions and Discounts: You can find a holiday that fits well with your business and allows you to celebrate it by holding a special sale, promotional event or discount. For National Friendship Day (July 30th), a spa could have a 2 for 1 special, for instance.
Print, Radio and OOH Creative: Through billboards, print and audio advertising, you can draw visitors into your business by advertising around a special day, week or month of observance. Radio and OOH can be especially effective in attracting people to your location while they are already on the go. Consider this approach for times of the year where you see less traffic. For instance, on National Mom and Pop Business Owners Day (March 29), you could encourage the community to support their local businesses.
Multicultural Advertising: There are a lot of national days or months of observance honoring the contributions of various ethnic groups in America. During these times of the year, you can reach out specifically to these groups of people and extend your love and support. National Hispanic Month (September), Black History Month (February), Arab American Heritage Month (April) and Asian Pacific American Heritage Month (May) are a few prime examples.
Now for the Fun Part: Choosing Your Holiday!
There are many, many days, weeks and months for you to choose from. It’s just a matter of picking the event and time that works best for your business goals and ad budget.
Here are just a few of the fun, weird and clever holidays you could use.
National Small Business Week, May 5-11: Immortalized on social media as #SmallBusinessWeek, the nation honors the entrepreneurs that help our communities thrive.
International Ninja Day, December 5: Celebrate the ninja in your life.
National Independent Retailer Month, July: Consumers are encouraged to shop their local, independent retailers, and show their appreciation. #IndieRetail.
National Houseplant Appreciation Day, Jan 10: Show your appreciation for them before they die!
Lemonade Day Promoting Young Entrepreneurs, May 5: Each year, in participating cities, youth have the opportunity to experience entrepreneurship by setting up their business during their city's community-wide Lemonade Day.
Slap Your Annoying Coworker Day, Oct 23: There are probably some people out there who would rather you not know about this particular day.
There are plenty more options, too - one for every occasion. Explore your own calendar and find the holiday that works for you.
Always a Reason to Celebrate
Whether you’re hunkered down for the winter or in the dog days of summer, you can always give your consumers a reason to celebrate. To make the most of your ad campaigns and maximize reach and impact, team up with skilled media buyers and planners at The Ward Group. We’ll work closely with you to craft the creative and messaging that will drive conversions, and then we will ensure it reaches the right people in the right places. Contact us today to join The Ward Group family, and spend the holidays with us - even the strange ones.