It's that time of the year again, so get ready to celebrate and leverage some handy business to business marketing ideas for the holidays. While many B2B marketers scale back their budgets during December in anticipation of the seasonal slowdown, the holidays are actually an ideal time to reach out to your customers with a holiday campaign.
Many B2Bs sell products or services that can't be bought and neatly wrapped up in a package, they need a different approach from their B2C counterparts. It's important to remember that while B2B holiday marketing initiatives may not register an immediate increase in sales, they can give your business valuable exposure all year round.
Here's a list of ideas to get you started:
B2B marketing is about relationships, and there is no better time of year to reach out to your customers and let them know how much you appreciate their business. So forgo the impersonal email greetings this year and opt for a personalised and thoughtful message instead, be it a handwritten card or a YouTube video.
Think outside the box
Show your company's personality by creating a fun holiday video or company infographic displaying employees' favourite holiday traditions, foods and movies. It's an innovative departure from the standard holiday card and will be sure to make you stand out from the crowd.
Give the gift that keeps on giving
Show your valued clients your appreciation by buying them a subscription to an industry magazine. Unlike boxes of chocolate or champagne, which are quickly forgotten, a magazine is something your customers can look forward to and will keep your business top of mind with customers throughout the year.
Host an open house party
Take advantage of the festive mood of the holidays by hosting a party. An open house party is a great way to introduce your business to people in your building who may need your services or know someone who does. Depending on your budget, you can join forces with other businesses to create an elaborate gala, or simply invite your neighbours over for a celebratory happy hour.
Make a charitable donation on your clients' behalf
The holiday season is about giving, so why not gift your clients with a charitable donation on their behalf? While there are many worthy causes to choose from, organisations like Heifer International and Oxfam help farmers worldwide with donations of animals and land, making for a truly memorable gift.
Offer year-end promotions
The holidays are a good time to offer promotions and first-time customer deals. You can send these out with your greeting cards or make them available at your open house. The key to making this approach effective is to skip the hard sales pitch in favour of thanking clients for their loyalty and giving them something useful for the year ahead.
Some advice about gifting
When selecting a business partner's gifts, be sure to exercise good taste. Avoid gifts of an overly personal or religious nature, and skip anything hyped up and gimmicky. A good rule of thumb is to ask yourself, "Would I want to receive this?"
Take advantage of the season of giving with these business to business marketing ideas for the holidays that are sure to spread some cheer.
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This article represents the views of the author only and not those of American Express.
Kathleen has a degree in marketing with over 10 years experience in the IT field as a database developer and web designer. As a freelance writer, Kathleen has written for several publications across Australia as well as for various business and hi-tech blogs online.