Insider Tip: Holidays and Social Media

Social media is a beast that PR professionals try to tame on a daily basis. While scheduling tools such as HootSuite and Sprout Social have made posting to social media much easier, creating relevant content is a fun and time-consuming task.

Throughout my time with Obsidian, I have worked on social media pages for more than 20 clients. I’ll let you in on a big secret that I’ve learned over the years – pay attention to holidays and key dates.

You may think this is very obvious, but you may be surprised by how many lesser-known holidays exist and can be used to promote your brand. Did you know World Chocolate Day is on July 7? Or, that International Bacon Day is always the Saturday before Labor Day? How about that Sept. 19 is Talk Like a Pirate Day? Or, that National Sibling Day is April 10?

Whether you’re promoting a product, service or an organization, you can use silly (and meaningful) holidays and awareness days to relate to your core audience. And, I don’t just mean posting a simple greeting such as “Happy World Chocolate Day!” Get creative! Use the awareness day theme to show off your employees’ personalities or provoke engagement. For example, “Happy World Chocolate Day! We’re celebrating with M&Ms for everyone at the office today. What tasty treats are you having to show respect for the holiday?”

Screen Shot 2015-10-27 at 1.15.14 PMAlso, using funny memes and hashtags related to a holiday will help maximize the reach of your post. (I mean, when else will it be appropriate to post that pirate joke you love?)

However, checking dates isn’t only for fun and games. Being mindful of key dates will help avoid inappropriate posts on days of remembrance such as 9/11, National Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day on Dec. 7, and Martin Luther King Jr. Day on the third Monday of January.

Lastly, be mindful of religious holidays. While Christmas, Hannukkah and Kwanzaa are easily remembered, other holy days such as Ramadan, All Saints Day and Rosh Hashanah are not often acknowledged. It may not be appropriate or needed to post about these holidays, but if you know your target audience observes a specific holiday, it should be considered.