Using PR effectively during the holidays
Most of the US will be celebrating the Labor Day holiday this weekend.It is an observance dating back to the late 19th century which is considered a tribute to the social and economic contributions of all American workers.Typically we think of it as a time of rest and relax, as well as prepare for the up and coming seasons of Fall and Winter.Public relations professionals should look at it as an opportunity to enhance relationships with their clients’ consumer audiences.
Some ideas for relationship building over this (and for that matter any other) holiday:
- Social media:
- The most basic is being sure that you have wished your social communities a #HappyLaborDay. Use trending and appropriate hashtags on channels like Twitter and Instagram so your posts enter in the ongoing conversations surrounding the topic. Don’t forget to use complementary and appropriate imagery for your target markets.If your product fans are young and trendy you will want to choose images that appeal to them. For example, pictures of a diverse set of attractive young people living it up at a decadent pool party or beach concert.If your brand likes to talk to mothers you might consider featuring a family barbecue or children sand castle building on the beach.
- Creative contests are also a great way to build excitement surrounding holidays.Making it personal is a great way to guarantee emotional engagement.Ask them to post pictures of their favorite Labor Day memory to the page or tag you in their post.Begin contests a few days in advance of the actual holiday to build excitement and end them just after the date as a way to extend the excitement of the celebration.
- Traditional public relations:
- Did you pitch your product to Labor Day shopping guides? If you didn’t by now, its too late. However there are a number of additional holidays right around the corner where this advice can be applied.If you are looking to make it into long lead publications like the top glossy magazines you will need to start two or three months in advance.Online publications and broadcast carry much shorter lead times ranging from a month to just a few days before with TV.
- The new PR or blogger outreach:
- If Labor Day is a big holiday for your brand, for example you are representing a sunscreen or disposable tableware company, you may have want to have implemented a blogger/influencer mailing.Their packages should arrive at their doorsteps about a month to 6 weeks in advance.Curate a list of the top bloggers/influencers in your category and send them a creative gift which includes the product.For example, a picnic basket filled with items essential for planning a backyard BBQ, that includes your client’s disposable silverware;or a #StayHealthyThisHoliday gift pack which includes outdoor safety-related items and also includes your sunscreen.
- Traditional events are powerful.No matter how much technology we acquire there will never be anything like face-to-face contact with your audience.However, if you are planning an event during a widespread national holiday like Labor Day you will want to “go to” your audience rather than asking them to “join you” at a specified location.People plan holiday vacations with families and friends months in advance and RSVPs may be low for an isolated event, no matter how enticing your accoutrements.Instead, consider activating guerrilla style at the beach or other location where you know your demographics are sure to be congregating.Paid sponsorships and activations at very large events like concerts and sporting events also work well.Stand out messaging will be key to cutting through crowds and chaos.
- You may also consider soft events such as recruiting a major influencer to host a twitter party in your brand’s honor or similarly finding a big influencer or celebrity to Periscope for your brand from a large concert or sporting event where you know all eyes will be focused during the holiday.
As you can see, PR doesn’t rest, not even on Labor Day. In fact, this and any other major holiday can become times to maximize exposure beyond the everyday capabilities of your platforms and tactics.
Bas Bleu PR is always here to plan out the perfect holiday, media mix for your brand.Get some rest and then get in touch.