“It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas, everywhere you go!” Tra-la-la-la-la-laaah.
Old timers complain the Christmas season doesn’t officially start until the day after Thanksgiving, on Black Friday. Not anymore.
Holiday music is making its way into stores along with festive, winter decorations and fur-lined boots and mittens. Walmart, Best Buy and Macy’s are starting their sales on Thanksgiving Day, before the turkey gravy has even had a chance to congeal. Car advertisements from Mercedes Benz tell us what the 1%ers can expect in their Christmas stockings this year.
It’s what we’ve come to expect from the holiday season where retailers are supposed to make up to 50% of their annual sales in a little over 30 days.
With holiday shopping coming sooner every year, that means your PR campaigns should start even earlier, too.
Want to get your store or restaurant into a print magazine for a holiday issue? Sorry, you’re about 2 months late to the party. Next year, start pitching your story in September as most magazines plan their issues 2-4 months in advance.
If you want to reach out to a local newspaper or online community ezine, then you should start pitching them now. They are probably assigning holiday articles as you read this so don’t wait a second more.
Local TV news stations like to get into the holiday spirit, too. The good news is they typically don’t plan their coverage more than a week in advance. Still, if you are planning to host kids at your pet store to make stockings for their dogs, cats and hamsters, then you may want to start pitching about 2 weeks out and then touch base again the following week.
Got a special drink menu at your coffee shop or bar? A cultural online digest for your town may want to share a recipe, and your business name, with its readers.
Don’t forget Thanksgiving, either! Just because it’s become a formality to get out of the way so we can start shopping ourselves silly doesn’t mean you can’t get a nice media mention for your nonprofit or business.
The trick is to be creative with your story idea to stand out from the rest of the holiday PR dribble. And, of course, get started now!