When is the Best Time to Start Preparing Marketing Material for the Holidays?

As the holiday season approaches, businesses must plan ahead to ensure they have all the necessary marketing materials. When is the best time to start creating these materials to ensure they are ready for the holidays? Early planning vs production planning – what best fits your goals?

For this blog, let’s focus on the holiday season between November and January. Every plan should begin with fundamental questions: Who is your target audience? What is the scale of your marketing campaign? What is your budget? What is your goal? Preparing marketing materials for the holidays is an opportunity to achieve Q4 goals or even ramp up for the following year.

General Guidelines:

  • Early Planning (six to 12 months in advance):

Consider starting your planning and initial brainstorming for major holidays six to 12 months ahead. This gives you ample time to develop creative ideas, design materials, and coordinate and implement your marketing strategy.

  • Mid-Range Planning (three to six months in advance):

Your marketing strategy should be finalized during this time, including your target audience and the scale of the marketing campaign. Begin creating content for your marketing materials, such as social media content, email campaigns, and advertisements.

  • Production (one to three months in advance):

Start production of your marketing materials, including graphic design and other creative material, video production, and copywriting. There is sufficient time to complete revisions and quality checks.

  • Testing (one to two months in advance):

Conduct quality assurance testing for all your materials to ensure they are effective and error-free.

  • Launch (one to four weeks before the holiday):

Your marketing campaign should go live in the weeks leading up to the holiday. The exact timing will depend on your target audience, the nature of your business, and your goals.

  • Ongoing Promotion (throughout the holiday season):

Marketing materials and campaigns should be kept active throughout the holiday season. Adjustments and optimizations can be made during this time based on performance.

Preparing for the holiday season requires careful planning, especially since different holidays and industries may have unique timeframes. It’s crucial to tailor your preparation schedule to meet your specific needs and stay flexible so that you can make last-minute adjustments based on market trends and customer feedback. Starting your holiday marketing material preparation early is recommended to ensure that you have enough time to focus on sales and engagement during this critical time of year.

Are you looking for a marketing refresh for 2024? Contact YCS Marketing for everything from brand management to mobile app solutions; we’ve got you covered.