5 Ways to Prepare Your Facebook Page for the Holidays

social media how toHave you prepared your Facebook page for the holidays?

Are you looking for tips on how to use your Facebook page this holiday season?

If you haven’t even started thinking about the holidays yet, it’s time!

In this article, you’ll find five ways to make your Facebook page festive for the holidays.

Why Customize For Holidays?

According to Mashable, 65% of shoppers tap social media looking for the perfect gift.

Any day now, your fans will start to look at your business’s Facebook page for holiday offers, promotions, events and deal information.

To make the most of these page visits, it’s important that your Facebook page is ready for the season.

Here’s how:

#1: Holiday-themed Cover Photos

When visitors land on your Facebook page, the cover photo is the first thing they see. Use this 851 x 315 px banner-style image to get your visitors into the spirit of the season!

You should change the cover photo of your page on a regular basis, especially during holidays. Why? Because people are browsing more than usual, looking for special offers and gift ideas, and checking out friends’ recommendations. Fresh cover photos motivate them to check your page often.

Your holiday cover photos should be representative of your brand, but reflective of the season as well. If you don’t want to use a holiday-specific cover photo, try a general holiday message or feature fall and winter colors.

non specific holiday themed photo

An example of a nonspecific holiday-themed cover photo that wishes fans a warm and happy holiday season.

In the above image, you can see how Media Barista themed a seasonal cover photo for their fans.

Use your cover photo to direct fans to a custom holiday app, showcase your holiday products, promote exclusive holiday deals and even encourage interaction from your fans.

Think of your cover photo as a large billboard. What information do you want to promote during the holiday season? Create a number of cover photos to help you!

#2: Spruce Up Your Profile Photo

Your profile photo is a major asset that can be used to complement your cover photo. Most brands don’t change their profile photo very often, but you should use the holiday season to change things up and get creative with it!

Ask an employee to dress in fall or winter clothing—or if someone is willing, like an elf or Santa. Decorate your company mascot or simply feature a special holiday product.

If you prefer to keep your logo as your page’s profile photo, add some holiday accents to your logo like DKS Systems did, below.

dks profile photo

Adjust your profile image for the holidays to keep your Facebook page looking fresh and up to date.

#3: Run Seasonal Social Campaigns

According to HubSpot, 81% of retailers use Facebook to alert shoppers about their in-store holiday deals.

Facebook recently updated their promotion guidelines, opening the door for more opportunities for promotions and giveaways. Businesses can now use the timeline in addition to custom Facebook apps to run promotions.

Here are three ideas you can implement this holiday season:

Reward Fans With a Holiday Giveaway

During this time of the year, the most popular kind of Facebook app to build is a giveaway app.

holiday ebook

Businesses can offer fans a holiday-related giveaway, including free resources, coupons or prizes.

Build an app to offer Facebook-only coupons, host holiday-themed photo and video contests that award a prize or run a special Black Friday, Cyber Monday or Christmas giveaway.

Drive Online and In-store Sales With an App

Fans appreciate free gifts and opportunities to win fun prizes and awards, but as a business you still need to drive online and in-store sales.

Use your Facebook page to showcase a popular product to customers. Once you have their attention, make it easy for them to find you with a store finder app to direct your fans to your brick-and-mortar location.

Everywhere Travel promotes travel deals on their Facebook page year-round.

everywhere travel

During the holidays, Everywhere Travel can drive traffic to this app for holiday travelers.

Boost Engagement With a Giving App

Holidays are a time for giving, so charitable-giving apps are really effective during the holiday season. Consider running a campaign that benefits a local or national charity and ask your fans to get involved.

fundraiser app

Apps that require direct fan engagement during the holidays draw in fans.

All of these ideas can be combined with timeline promotions, which allows you to capitalize on the engagement and reach the campaign generates. You can host your competition on the timeline and use a Facebook app to offer extra entries, share additional offers and collect information from your fans.

#4: Decorate Your App Thumbnails

App thumbnails continue to be one of the most neglected areas of a business page’s timeline. Your app thumbnails are the 111 x 74 px images located underneath your cover photo on the bottom right side of your page. Edit your tab apps with custom images that are adjusted to fit your holiday branding.

Design your cover photo with an arrow that points to your app thumbnails and use the thumbnail space to create a call to action that encourages fans to learn more about your holiday offers.

In the image below, notice how Burt’s Bees does a great job of drawing attention to their current campaigns and offers with their branded app thumbnails. They haven’t updated their profile for the holiday season yet, but I bet they will soon!

burts bees thumbnails

Update your app thumbnails to coincide with your latest offers and social campaigns for further reach and engagement.

#5: Schedule Holiday-related Facebook Ads

Most businesses on Facebook are using Facebook ads, at least on occasion. If you’re still on the fence about Facebook ads, the holiday season is a perfect time to jump in.

If you’re ready to experiment with Facebook ads, first set a budget. Then create a few different ads and implement some A/B testing. Andrea Vahl provided some great tips for seeing results with Facebook ads.

You can also experiment with promoted posts and sponsored stories. Promoted posts and sponsored stories are existing Facebook posts that you pay to promote, versus creating ads.

If you post a status update promoting a holiday deal or app, I recommend putting money behind your posts to reach a larger audience. If you need to catch up on Facebook’s latest advertising offers, check out this eBook from Jon Loomer.

holiday ad

Test a holiday-themed ad for your business to drive more traffic during the holidays.

Over to You

To make sure that your Facebook page is ready for holiday traffic this year, take time now to plan your seasonal campaigns and prearrange your holiday ads.

Be creative with your seasonally themed cover images, profile photos and custom app thumbnail images. Most of all, be giving and remember to experiment with your social media activity.

What do you think? How do you plan on using Facebook in your holiday marketing efforts? What other tips for holiday readiness can you share? Leave your ideas and comments in the box below.

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About the Author, Jim Belosic

Jim Belosic is the CEO of ShortStack, a self-service software that allows businesses to create engaging campaigns for social, web and mobile. Other posts by »




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  • http://www.christiankonline.com Christian Karasiewicz

    Great post Jim – just in time for the holidays.

    #4 is a great tip that you can apply year-round.

  • Terri

    Great post thanks. I have an online Yoga store and was thinking about using FB to try and drive gift card sales this holiday season. Any tips on the best way to do that?

  • http://www.MobileMarketingAndPromotions.ca/ Kevin

    What do you do if you are locked out as admin of your business page and there s no one to get you back in. I would love to follow these tips, but i have no access to my page.
    I Contacted Facebook several time, but no response.

  • http://facebook.com/Ability2Consult M. Wiggins

    Awesome awareness as a professional that allows creativity and lightheartedness to be conveyed on the social media marketing platform.

  • Robbinsinteractive

    This has happened to me before You need to be really persistent with Facebook. The key is to say that your Facebook username is not in the hands of a company employee. Don’t say you don’t have access, they won’t help you. Instead say that it is a trademark violation because a non company employee as the page.

  • http://www.shortstack.com/ Jim Belosic

    Hi Terri, that’s a great idea and there are a lot of ways you can do this. The best thing to do would be to create a custom Facebook Page app. This way you could offer people a Facebook only coupon. You could also do a Timeline promotion with a gift card as the giveaway or you can run a contest on a custom app. My company provides a lot of free resources on custom apps and social media tips, you can see them here: http://www.sociallystacked.com/category/social-media-tips/#sthash.CfwyUUjY.dpbs also take a read!

  • http://www.shortstack.com/ Jim Belosic

    Hi Kevin, yes this can be frustrating but I agree with @d8539b35eb25ced19473c57bf492c3e5:disqus advice. Be persistent with Facebook, ultimately they are the ones that have to give you access again.

  • http://www.shortstack.com/ Jim Belosic

    This article also has an example of a Yoga Studio using a custom Facebook app to offer a promotion for their studio. Check out #2: http://www.jonloomer.com/2013/05/15/facebook-page-app-ideas-summer/

  • AmandahBlackwell

    Great post!

    I change Facebook covers to reflect an upcoming holiday and/or event. I’m hoping to run seasonal campaigns.

    Regarding, “Build an app to offer Facebook-only coupons, host holiday-themed photo and video contests that award a prize or run a special Black Friday, Cyber Monday or Christmas giveaway.” Can you recommend a free contest app?

    My tips for holiday readiness are:

    1. Plan your holiday marketing (online and offline) in advance.
    2. Conduct an A/B split test on your campaigns.
    3. Review past campaigns and contests that didn’t work and revise them. Test.

  • http://www.shortstack.com/ Jim Belosic

    Hi @AmandahBlackwell:disqus, there are a few different third party platforms, I’m the founder of ShortStack so I am a little biased but we do offer a free plan where you could run a basic contest.

  • AmandahBlackwell

    Thanks Jim! I’ll check out ShortStack.

  • http://sproutsocial.com/features/social-media-engagement Sarah @ Sprout Social

    Great post, Jim! The holidays are a superb time to take advantage of the tips you give here. Plus I think around that time of the year, people are just so much more attracted to and tempted to check out holiday-related things. I think even just a holiday-related profile picture goes a long way!

    I like Amandah’s advice to conduct an A/B split test. You never know what toy or trend is going to be popular!

  • http://www.EntrepreneurOnFire.com/ John Lee Dumas

    Great post Jim! I can definitely see how business who do target consumers around
    the holidays would greatly benefit from these tips. Thanks for sharing!

  • http://threeladdersmarketing.com/ Three Ladders Marketing

    Yeah, great idea utilizing your Facebook timeline now that you can run promotions there. We always make sure to pin the promo post to the top of your timeline for as long as the promotion is running. Last year we had great success promoting a different product each of the 12 days of Christmas. Could be even better now that we can use Facebook Timelines!

  • http://www.digitalinsights.in/ Digital Insights

    Great article Jim, great way to boost sales for brands.

  • http://www.shortstack.com/ Jim Belosic

    That’s a great idea @threeladdersmarketing:disqus, and you can combine it with a custom app so you can collect some extra information about your fans and marketing to them through the New Year!

  • http://thinkupnewmedia.com/about Mike Macey | ThinkUp New Media

    Great ideas using the newsfeed for likes and CTA to an app. Thanks Three Ladders Marketing and Jim.

  • http://www.dailysuccessfulliving.com/ Daily Successful Living

    I hadn’t thought of switching my profile up for the holidays. Thanks for the timely suggestion.

  • http://www.gocreativego.com/ Mallie Hart

    Wow! I just saw this. I’m no longer designing under the Media Barista moniker, I’m putting all my efforts into Go Creative Go – including holiday design! It’s such an honor to be part of this awesome article! Thanks so much!

  • http://threeladdersmarketing.com/ Three Ladders Marketing

    Yeah, good point. Do you have some favorite software or products for creating high quality apps within Facebook?

  • Pingback: What to do about your Holiday marketing.

  • Sara Piccola

    Hi @threeladdersmarketing:disqus check out ShortStack :)

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  • Pingback: » Online Marketing News: 21 New Content Marketing Rules, 10 Free Monitoring Tools, 150 Million Instagram Users, 5 Ways Facebook Pages Get Festive

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  • Bunny

    Aw

  • Bunny

    This is awesome info!! Thx Bunny









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