As Christmas hurtles towards us in a flurry of wrapping paper, panic buying and sparkly decorations, I imagine you feel as though you’re juggling even more balls than usual. I know I do.
“When you publish a regular blog, what is the etiquette about holidays and Christmas? I’m thinking of closing for Christmas for the first time ever, and as my regular blog is published on a Tuesday, there will be a blog due on Christmas Eve. I can’t imagine many will be around to read it. I do have a couple of seasonal blog posts lined up for the weeks leading up to Christmas, but I feel a bit funny about blogging on Christmas Eve.”
I’m facing the same dilemma, having decided to close the office from Monday 23rd December to Monday 6th January this year.
The way I see it, there is no right or wrong answer about if and when you blog over the Christmas holidays.
These are the options that you could consider:
Option 1: Blog over Christmas as usual
You’ve worked hard on your blog all year and you’re starting to have a core group of clients and fans who regularly read and respond to your articles. Your blog forms a regular part of your marketing and is used in your newsletter too. People know when you’re going to post new content and they look out for it.
It’s understandable that you might be worrying about taking some time off over Christmas. What you could do (and it’s my plan for this Christmas) is to write your blogs in advance and schedule them so that they appear as usual. This way you can keep up your marketing routine without a break.
Realistically, you probably won’t get as many hits on your website or as many opens of your newsletter but it means that you’re maintaining a consistent presence.
Option 2: Write some shorter blogs
Because your loyal readers are busy and time is so precious over the Christmas period, you could always opt to write shorter blog posts. This might just be a Happy Christmas message or a summary of great pages, stories, trends, pictures, etc. you’ve either featured on your site during the year or you’ve found from across the Internet.
Option 3: Line up some guest blogs
You could always contact people in your network who share a similar ideal customer to you and ask whether they’d be interested in writing a guest blog for you. You may even have some guest blogs in reserve. If so, now is the time to use them. With this option, you’re still giving valuable fresh content to your customers without having to generate it yourself.
Option 4: Post a video
According to stats from Brainshark earlier this year, the information we retain from watching just one minute of video is equivalent to reading about 1.8 million words! You could always
film a short vlog of five minutes or less using your trusty webcam and microphone and post this on your page instead. Alternatively, why not follow in the footsteps of some of the world’s biggest brands and create a six-second Twitter Vine video or 15-second Video on Instagram.
Option 5: Repurpose old content
Another option is to go back over your blog archive and see whether there’s an article that could be updated and repurposed to add new value to your customers. I know when I started my blog early this year, my website had only just relaunched and my traffic was much lower than it is today. I have some great blogs that lots of you probably haven’t read. If you decide to repurpose an old article, just be honest with your readers and tell them you’ve updated a great topic from the archive.
Option 6: Take a break
If you’re anything like me, you’re tired and need some down time, some time to recharge and be with your friends and family. My honest opinion is that the world won’t end if you take a break from your blog over Christmas. Yes, you may see a temporary dip in your traffic in the New Year but I imagine it won’t be anywhere near as significant as you’re imagining.
Again, honesty is the best policy. Tell your customers that you’re going to take some time off to enjoy Christmas and that your blog will be back as usual on a specific date. It’s essential that you let your customers know exactly what’s happening. They’ve invested their time, energy and possibly money in your business throughout the year, so it’s only courteous to keep them in the loop.
I’m sure they won’t begrudge you some down time. You’re human and no-one will hold it against you that you want to relax and unwind for a while.
So, what are your plans over Christmas? Are you taking some time off from work and/or your blog? Which option have you gone for with your blog over Christmas? Scheduling in advance, videos or a break? I’d love to hear your experiences and whether it all goes to plan.