So absurd they have cult followings, some holidays are practically impossible to ignore. I’m not talking Christmas here. I’m talking about fake holidays, invented by who the hell even knows, that most people only realize exist once they scroll through their newsfeed that day.
In honor of National Donut Day (my favorite fake holiday), I’m letting you in on why I not only think fake holidays are awesome, but how I’ve used them to grow my business.
I look forward to National Donut Day all year long because I know it’s a super fun way to promote Glitter and Bold on social media (plus, you know, donuts). Same goes for National Coffee Day (September 29th), National Best Friend Day (June 8th), and National Pink Day (June 23rd).
My business doesn’t even relate to donuts (although most days I wish it did, that would be awesomely delicious), so how the heck do I use something as weird as National Donut Day to increase followers and, ultimately, customers?!
1. National ________ Day is like the Kimmy Gibbler of the holiday world
Most people have no idea where they come from, when they’ll appear, or the reason behind them, but are down to party once their newsfeed tells them it’s National Grilled Cheese Day (April 12th if you were wondering).
Seriously, think back to the last fake holiday that everyone went nuts over. Sometimes it’s only a few “Can’t believe I almost missed this!” posts late at night, but some days you wake up your feed is flooded.
So, if tons of your people are going to be going gaga for a fake holiday, wouldn’t it only make sense to tap into that?!
And no, I don’t mean start posting a million pictures of grilled cheese on April 12th (unless you’re a grilled cheese restaurant, in which case, you rock). But if you’re an avid grilled cheese lover, consider posing your fave sandwich on a cute plate next to your biz planner or keyboard.
TAKEAWAY: Add relevant holidays to your calendar. I find most of mine through my Bando agenda, but there are other comprehensive lists out their in the Internet-land. You can also think of things related to your business and Google them as national holidays. You’d be surprised at how often something pops up!
2. They make really fun content.
Did I mention National Donut Day is my favorite?! That’s because I’m (1) a walking sweet tooth and (2) love using pretty donuts as props in my flat lay photos.
If it’s a holiday that naturally lends itself to your business, like National Coffee Day for my mug shop, it’s an easy way to tie a trending hashtag and connect with new people who love the same things you do. I have mugs on mugs on mugs, so a few pictures of coffee in a mug with #nationalcoffeeday is a winning combo for me.
I don’t sell donuts, or any food for that matter, and while some people are into the donut + coffee combo, that’s usually not my focus in social media. Donuts are trendy and fun. Glitter and Bold is trendy and fun. If you’re lucky, you can find colorful and/or weird ones. Glitter and Bold is colorful and weird! The people using and looking through #nationaldonutday are 9 times out of 10 my people.
So I add a donut next to my To Do list for the week. I style a donut on top of one of my mugs. I draw a hand lettered quote about donuts. I don’t make them the sole focus of my business, because I’m not in the donut business, but I use them to compliment my business and products.
TAKEAWAY: Tie them in as little or as much as you want. For something suuuuper relevant, like National Coffee Day or National Handwriting Day for Glitter and Bold, I make a big deal. Same goes for National Donut Day since it easily ties into my business and has such a large following. However, you don’t need to go all out to benefit. Sometimes it’s as simple as tying it into your story or caption. For example, for National Best Friend’s Day I might post two mugs and mention the holiday in the caption.
3. Hashtags help you find your people
This is true of hashtags in general, but if you’re anything like me, you often rotate the same hashtags throughout your feed. National holidays provide you with a whole new audience.
Last I checked, there were 287,175 posts tagged with #nationaldonutday, 389,905 for #nationalcoffeeday, and 183,802 for #maythe4th (shoutout to my fellow Star Wars peeps!). Those are HUGE.
And unlike a lot of hashtags people use for business, they’re ones that everyone is looking through. These aren’t a “post it and forget it” kind of thing. People want to connect with other people who recognize the holiday, so they’re going to be scrolling through and seeing what it’s all about.
TAKEAWAY: Use hashtags, but keep your photos branded. When someone is scrolling through #nationaldonutday and sees my flat lay of pink donuts styled on a pink background with my hand lettered mugs, they’ll only click through to my account if something in that photo really clicked with them. Wouldn’t it suck if they clicked over and saw my feed looking NOTHING like that photo they liked?! However, when they see that flat lays and pink and donuts and coffee are totally my jam, they’re going to follow. They’re going to engage and find value in what I’m bringing to the table.
4. Opt-ins for the win!
I won’t preach about how important it is to grow your list, because if you’re anything like me, you’re pretty sick of being hit over the head with that one, but I WILL say that national holidays can lend themselves really well towards fun opt-ins.
They are also an excellent way to draw the people who’ve found you on social media onto your own website or into your inbox, turning followers into customers.
TAKEAWAY: Pick 3 fake holidays that are the most relevant to your biz and think of an opt-in you can offer on those days. Maybe it’s a free printable with a picture or a quote, worksheet, or recipe. Consider offering it for a limited time or tie it into an evergreen piece (like a blog post!).
Can you see why I’m nuts for fake holidays now?! They provide fun and refreshing content, help me find more of my people, and are great ways to provide even more value through opt-ins.
Speaking of opt-ins, this month’s update in the wallpaper library includes a few holiday-specific gems. If you’re not already in, what are you waiting for?!