The A-2-Z of business blog writing: X is for Xmas And Other Special Days

Business blog writing,posts,holidays,special days,articles,business blogs,business writing,writing tips

Special days can be useful to give
your business blog posts a topical edge

Making use of holidays and other special occasions as a way of creating topical blog posts is a good idea, provided that you use such occasions in an intelligent way that helps to promote your business … and stands out from everyone else who might be trying to make a noise along similar lines.

(For a list of the top 10 most helpful articles on blogging for business as chosen by our readers, click here)

Here are a few dates that might inspire you come up with some good links with what you do. The following are based on what’s celebrated in the UK where I live, but what would really help everyone here on HTWB is some input on special dates in other countries. I have suggested a few as I go along, but any more would be really  welcome. If we get a good response I’ll put them all together into a download.

New Year. One of the biggest problems with New Year is that everyone crashes in on it and all you see on the internet for several days before and after is posts, advertising and all manner of other things saying “Happy New Year and here are the resolutions you should make” along with numerous variations on “Happy New Year and buy my stuff now.” So, if you want to capitalize on the New Year you need to make sure your post – and especially your headline and structure – are very, very well focused to your readership and customers. Provided you do that, these are good.

Burn’s Night. If you’re Scottish or have any connections with Scotland – either via yourself or your products and services – Burn’s Night on January 25th is an excellent opportunity to bring wistful tears to the eyes of Scots expats everywhere and row in your thoughts on Scotch whisky and other traditional Scottish exports. Surprisingly, haggis (the traditional Burn’s supper meal served along with tatties and neeps) is becoming a celebrated fare elsewhere in the UK and I’m sure, in other parts of the world where people of Scottish descent live.

Valentine’s Day. Whatever you sell or whatever service you offer, provided that it’s reasonably within the B2C (Business To Consumer) range of interests you’ll almost certainly find a hook to Valentine’s Day on February 14th that will provide you with an opportunity to sell something – especially if you do special offers for Valentine’s Day couples. Once again, as in New Year, you’re up against squillions of other business bloggers offering Valentine’s deals to their readers, so you need to make sure your offering is well targeted to your known readership/customer base.

St David’s Day. March 1st – the celebration for Wales. In international terms St David’s Day isn’t likely to attract quite so much attention as the major landmarks do, so if you – and/or your customers and readers – have a connection with Wales this is the time to go for it. Daffodils and leeks are symbols connected with Wales, too, so should your business champion either of these this is also a useful time.

Business blog writing,posts,holidays,special days,articles,business blogs,business writing,writing tips

You need to be careful not to get trampled
in the rush of everyone else cashing in
on special days in their business blogs

St Patrick’s Day. March 17th – the Irish celebration. Given that there are people of Irish descent all over the world, this can be a wonderful opportunity to capitalize on either your Irish connections and/or Irish-related products and services. However be aware that Ireland has political issues with the UK, and despite the fact that most normal, intelligent people believe that mutual respect is essential, there are some people who disagree with that. If by any chance some of your customers are within those groups, be careful.

Easter. Another Christian festival which is celebrated quite widely and scatters brightly colored eggs, bunnies, chicks, chocolates and various other fattening symbols across every imaginable portal. Once again, be warned that everyone else is going to be flaunting Easter bunnies in most B2C marketplaces so make sure your own offering is relevant if you want it to stand out.

St George’s Day. Yes, you heard … England has a patron saint and his name is George. Amazingly St George’s Day on April 23rd is not celebrated in England to anything like the extent of the saints connected to Scotland, Wales and Ireland, but protests against this lack of enthusiasm are growing and St George’s Day is becoming more appreciated. If you’re English and/or your products/services are English, cash in on the growing promotion of this jolly old saint and gear your business blog posts accordingly.

May Day. In a number of countries this is a public holiday (ostensibly May 1st but in many places the first Monday in May) and usually this is connected with the labor force. So if your product/service is connected with that, this is your chance to use it.

May 24th. A long weekend in Canada during which many people buy and plant their gardens for the summer, knowing that further frost or snow is unlikely! As we Canadians have a fondness for history and tradition and stuff, this holiday has been celebrated for umpty-dump years as May 24th was the UK’s late Queen Victoria’s birthday. I know, I know. But if you’re in Canada and have an interest either in Queen Victoria or gardening, this is the time to get blogging for business.

Various public holidays during summer months. These vary from country to country but on a local basis they are likely to provide opportunities for businesses to blog about vacations, short breaks, activities for families, things for school children to do while on holiday, etc.

Back to school. Useful chances for businesses selling anything from child care to school clothing to get in on the frenzy. Timing is critical though: too early and customers won’t want to think about “back to school” yet, and too late will see them having bought already from your competitors.

Halloween. A good time for blogging about your business if it involves jack- o-‘lanterns, dressing up, costumes, candy/sweets, party favors, etc. Be careful if you’re in the UK though: many people here object to the “trick or treat” concept and are very unwelcoming to goblins and spooks turning up on the doorstep asking for goodies.

Business blog writing,posts,holidays,special days,articles,business blogs,business writing,writing tips

Guy Fawkes Night in the UK: not so good
for business bloggers unless
you sell fireworks!

Bonfire Night (UK). Thanks to a certain Mr Guy Fawkes who tried to blow up the London Parliament back in 1605, in the UK we celebrate his failure by blowing up thousands of fireworks which children enjoy and I loathe because the noise terrifies my dogs. Previously bonfires were lit to help the celebrations along but these are receding now as there have been so many accidents with them. Not an especially good business blogging opportunity unless you sell fireworks.

Thanksgiving. In October in Canada, late November in the USA. In the USA, at least, this is arguably the most important family get-together time of the year and for people blogging about anything to do with catering, food, recipes, turkeys, pumpkins, etc. it’s potentially a busy time. Plus you get all the smashing sale offers that accompany those dates. See below.

Black Friday / Cyber Monday. A recently manufactured (by marketers, we assume) phenomenon, these days which occur immediately after the US Thanksgiving are being taken up in other countries now. Black Friday is a major shopping day often seen as the beginning of the Christmas/Holiday shopping season, so everyone is rushing to offer their customers the best bargains possible. Cyber Monday is its online equivalent, with a hefty push to get people to shop online for the Holidays and beyond.

Hannuka. A Jewish festival that’s celebrated, or at least appreciated, by many. An obvious opportunity if your business involves Jewish-related products and/or services, but even if it doesn’t – it’s a time to share.

And, Christmas. A flurry of sales-orientated blogs in whatever business you’re in. But unless you want your business blog posts to disappear into the flurry of Christmas hysteria, make sure your posts are focused on your readers and what they need – as always – and your Christmas wishes will be truly appreciated.

That’s just a few key dates in the calendar. Now, what about some more?

I’m fully aware that I have only just scratched the surface of key dates and how to benefit from them in a business blog. There are several more that I know I’ve missed, as well as dozens more – I’m sure – that I don’t even know about.

Please, please share the key dates you might use to inspire business blog posts in your country. That way we can compile a useful directory that works worldwide.

Thank you in anticipation.

photo credit: Pink Sherbet Photography via photopin cc
photo credit: Beverly & Pack via photopin cc
photo credit: kennymatic via photopin cc

Comments

comments

Thoughts

  1. Suzan,

    Speak your voice and tell your own authentic story during the holidays. For example, given my style I would share a Christmas Story about how my father once sliced his hand open when cutting our tree – from a humorous angle – and tie it into making money online somehow 😉

    Differentiate, by being you, and all you do.

    Excellent post.

  2. Thanks Ryan – that’s an excellent point about tying the article into your own personal experiences and then moving it back out to a business parable if you can. I know someone who sends out daily business emails that always start out with a very funny personal story, then move into the business sell – I would share his URL here but his language is not “safe for work!”

  3. Nice post, thanks Suze. I love the idea of using special dates sensibly and Ryan’s point about being yourself.

    I’d add special things about you/ your audience to your list, although that needs research. So, last year I wrote a series of blogs about Dr Who (50th anniversary). OK, they weren’t really about him, but used him in various analogies. Yes, you guessed it, it showed something about me.

    • Absolutely, Jon – thanks for sharing this. Anniversaries within areas of particular interest to you and your readers are perfect opportunities for targeted blog posts, whether they’re about Dr Who or Startrek, sports, famous business, financial or political figures, etc.

Thoughts

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