Content does not exist in a vacuum. The best articles are relevant to the time they are published.
We are entering high season for the holidays. Thanksgiving/Chanukkah (AKA Thanksgivukkah: they arrive simultaneously this year), Christmas, Kwanzaa and New Year’s are just about upon us.
Your audience will soon be searching for turkey tips and pie recipes. Check out what Hallmark is doing. They sell cards, but their website theme at the moment is brilliantly named A Big Easy Thanksgiving. Someone out there, faced with the imminent arrival of two dozen relatives, is surely searching for “easy Thanksgiving.” And it’s a play on the term Big Easy, a nickname for New Orleans. Hallmark’s recipes have a southern flair. “Take a chance,” reads another teaser for pie recipes on the landing page. “Try a new pie this season.”
Hallmark sells cards, and while their best business is at Christmas, they do put out a line of Thanksgiving greeting cards, ranked at number 7 in overall sales. Will Thanksgiving recipes inspire people to purchase Thanksgiving cards? Probably not, but once the company has eyes on their website, and quite possibly for hours as visitors faithfully recreate suggested recipes, they’ve got a captive audience and a whole lot of prime real estate to suggest the purchase of Christmas themed products.
Is it New Years yet? Remodelaholic, which offers tips on wall mounting flat screen TVs and living room redesign, posted a popular list of 32 Best Ideas For New Year’s Eve at the end of 2012. It’s not completely different from the crafty theme of the overall site, but again, it takes a content cue from the cycle of the seasons and as such, sits solidly on page two of Google results for the search “new years eve ideas.” Pretty good for a scrappy little family run website. They even beat out big player Pottery Barn, which also posted New Year’s Eve party tips.
The idea is to be where your customers are, but be there just slightly ahead of them. The cycle of the seasons is a perfect anchor. We all know which holidays are coming up, and it doesn’t take too much to guess what people are searching for. In fact, you could (and should) be thinking about your Valentine’s Day strategy now, even though we haven’t even hit Black Friday yet.
While a lot of your company’s content is going to refer directly or indirectly to your goods and services, as often as possible it should refer back to what’s going on in the world at the moment.
Some things you can’t predict. But holidays, like death and taxes, are inevitable. Plan accordingly. And consider making turkey doughnuts, or just latkes, as a side dish on November 28th.