Brick-and-mortar retailers refer to the day after Thanksgiving as Black Friday, the official start of the Christmas shopping season. Whatever you call it, you’ve got opportunities galore to tie your product or service to it. Think trends.
Here are some ideas to get you started:
—Credit counselors should remind us about how credit card companies have us in their grip this time of year. Pass along tips on how to be a smart shopper this holiday season and stay within our means.
—According to findings of a survey conducted by Circuit City, 37 percent of respondents said they will do more holiday shopping online this year versus last year. If you’re an expert in Internet marketing, offer tips on how Internet marketers or anyone who buys online can avoid rip-offs this holiday season. For example, any order I get from Nigeria raises a red flag, and the buyer must pass a serious of security checks before I’ll ship the product.
—Retailers are tightening their policies on returns. If you’re one of them, let business and consumer reporters know why.
—I love getting and receiving gift certificates, but not the ones that expire just a few months after Christmas. Consumer experts can offer tips about things to watch out for, like short expiration dates, if we’re buying certificates to give as gifts.
—If your business involves children, do your own mini-review of age-appropriate toys and share your findings with the local media. They love stories like this.
—Get into holiday gift guides. From now until Christmas, newspapers will be flooded with Holiday Gift Guides. Even though the deadline for most magazine gift guides has passed, more than 100 newspapers, wire services and TV and radio stations are actively seeking products and services for holiday gift features. Check The Gift List, a handy resource guide chock full of contact information for media planning holiday gift features. Test-drive this service with a 24-hour pass. Send an email to Amy and tell her you want to try it out.
If you’re submitting shopping tips, a great way to do it is with a tip sheet like “10 tips on how to…” During a teleseminar I hosted called “Briefs, Fillers & Quizzes: How to Write Them and Why Editors Love Them,” I explained that briefs are one of the best ways to get into national magazines because they don’t take up much room. Besides, editors are always looking for short items to fill odd-size holes on a page.
So stop going after only the big stories.