Avoid Social Media Mishaps in the New Year!

When someone visits your business Facebook page is the first post they see a Happy New Years graphic? And is the second one from Thanksgiving? Yes? You need to up your social media game. Compelling content is at the ROOT of strong social media engagement; and that engagement is what builds your brand’s audience, an efficient form of lead generation!

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‘Tis the Season of Hashtag Holidays

For local and small businesses up to 40% of annual revenue is earned in November and December. To not capitalize on the marketing power of the season, including the commercially created hashtag holidays, is truly a lost opportunity. However, which should you take advantage of and how?

#BlackFriday started as an in-store sales event, but is now a pervasive, expected seasonal discount spanning most of November. The noise and competition around #BlackFriday is so dramatic that it requires heavy promotion to stand out in the crowd. While full participation in a #BlackFriday event may not be appropriate for all small businesses, the strategy of an appealing loss-leader to drive store traffic can be very effective.

#SmallBusinessSaturday, founded by American Express, is a marketing approach with increasing resonance for consumers and communities. As we experience the explosion of online behemoths, big box multi-nationals, and even suburban malls, community and civically-minded consumers are drawn to patronizing and promoting their local stores and services. The online creative assets available at www.americanexpress.com  make it easy to convey a #SmallBusinessSaturday message and remind shoppers to come out in force on November 25th.

#CyberMonday has lost some of its impact with the digitization of #BlackFriday. However, consumers have been trained to watch their email inbox diligently on Monday, November 27th because they know that the very best offers will be shared on that date and via that channel. Email lists should be built, cleaned and nurtured over the course of the year with this one email blast in mind.

For non-profits and fundraisers, #GivingTuesday was created to capitalize on the holiday hashtag momentum. Marketing connected to this hashtag provides a boost to all usual development efforts and enjoys a halo of conscience and community responsibility. The sharing aspect of social media and email are perfect platforms for the #GivingTuesday message. This year, Facebook will waive its 5% commission on all money raised on November 28th, increasing the impact of contributions which is important to donors and non-profits alike.

Taking advantage of the holiday hashtag phenomenon requires advance planning and benefits from teaser campaigns that start the promotions much earlier than the appointed dates. Next year, Red Root Marketing will be happy to help you begin your planning and execution in September for maximum impact.


Small Business Lessons We've Learned From You

This past week, the Red Root Marketing team spent Monday night at the North Jersey Woman’s Expo. We handled social media and online promotion for the event, posting 100s of photos and shout outs to the 70 vendors and over 600 attendees. Walking around the expo gave us the opportunity to learn how these mostly small business entrepreneurs challenged traditional marketing strategy. Each of these innovators had a lesson to share – below are just a few:

·       Don’t resign yourself to a single demographic. From Papertrails, offering DIY paper crafting classes and party services, we learned about marketing beyond a traditional target audience. One might think that paper crafting would start and end with pirate and princess masks at children’s events. However, these amazing women were able to capitalize on the growing market for adult craft experiences with events like ‘The Real Selfie’ party for adults to gather and create versions of themselves in paper. www.papertrailsnj.com

·       Passion fuels innovation. Judith Antelman of Bark & Truffle loves Parisian chocolates, particularly creamy truffles, but wanted to create a dairy-free, sugar-free version. One might think, ‘c’est impossible!’ After years of trial and error, Judith finally perfected a rich chocolate that rivals those found in the City of Lights. The world is a better place because of the determination of innovators like Judith, and so many of our own clients who are creating gluten-free baked goods, healthy water enhancers and antioxidant rich drinks. www.barkandtruffle.com

·       Leverage burgeoning markets. As baby boomers age, elder care is a huge growth market. Wendy Sabin, LCSW, LLC, founded Sabin Elder Care Solutions, an expansive service that helps people navigate the difficult task of aging in place, managing geriatric crises or just providing guidance and resources as aging and life care advisors. www.savineldercare.com

·       Package hope. And, for me personally, as I listen to my daughter complain about the dearth of datable young men in college, I was delighted to meet Julianne Cantarella, MSW, LSW, Matchmaker, Dating Coach and Relationship Expert, and hear about the bright future of happy couples she has brought together or made stronger through her services. Julianne will be my first phone call when this Jewish mother feels it’s time for grandchildren. www.newjerseymatchmaker.com

Join us at the next Expo event in the spring – we’d love to learn your story.