‘Tis the season to be jolly… and reconnect with your customers!

The holidays are the perfect time to reach out to customers and celebrate the season, while also getting your name out there and promoting your business and products. Put some extra thought into your holiday marketing strategy to make you stand out from the crowd.

Here at The Drawing Board, we have become known for giving unique and creative gifts to our clients at the end of the year as a way to say “Thank you” for their business in the past year. So while other companies are giving traditional gifts like a fruit basket, business card holders or pens, we’ve given some customized candy bars, specialty cupcakes and brownies, portable phone chargers, and gourmet marshmallows—usually revolving around a theme or concept.

Cause marketing is a good way to get the word out about your business, and help someone else at the same time. For Thanksgiving, there is a restaurant in Michigan that for the last 10 years, the owner has invited people who are homeless, or would just prefer not to eat alone, to have a free Thanksgiving meal. This kind of tradition got his restaurant great exposure, after the story was shared multiple times online. Another example is Subaru, which has become known for its “Share the Love” event, now in its eighth year. This promotion has allowed people who purchase or lease a new Subaru between November and January to have $250 donated to a charity of their choice, resulting in $65 million donated over the years.

The holidays aren’t the only time you can put the idea of “holiday marketing” to use. There are many special events throughout the year that you can use to get people talking about your business or the charities you help. We all know about Rita’s Italian Ice, and how they market the First Day of Spring to offer free Italian ice to all customers. Dunkin’ Donuts is also known for its “Eagles Win, You Win” promo in the Philadelphia area, where Eagles fans can celebrate a win with a free coffee. And let’s not forget about that crazy burger with the black bun that Burger King offered during Halloween.

Take some time to think about your business, and your customers, to see what you can come up with that would be a good tradition to start that they can look forward to every year. It could be related to a holiday or not. Personalize your campaign to get the customers involved, or get your staff involved to boost effectiveness. Make your campaign easy to share through social media and maybe include an online deal to entice your customers to make a purchase or share with friends and family.

Find something that you and your employees are passionate about and that your customers would love, and would make them remember your name, whether it is something beneficial for them, or for a cause they care about in their community.