Social media is an essential component to any retailer’s holiday marketing strategy. According to a BDO Seidman study, more than half of the retailers surveyed incorporated social media into their 2009 holiday campaigns, with 76% using Facebook and 50% using Twitter. With an increasing number of consumers using social media platforms to obtain information, and the holidays just around the corner, it is important for all marketers to take advantage of this trend.

Following are some tips that will help marketers successfully integrate social media into holiday marketing:

• Start early. By establishing your social media presence early on, you are more likely to successfully engage with your audience and increase your consumer base.
• Interact with your consumers. Learn what they are looking for in terms of holiday offers. The great thing about social media is that it’s dialogue-based. The more you engage and interact with your audience, the more successful your holiday campaign will be.
• Spread the word. Promote all of your holiday offers on each of your social media platforms. Don’t forget to be consistent. If you promote an offer on Twitter, make sure to post the same offer on Facebook.
• Create a sense of urgency. Add a countdown to your social page to the holidays to incite your consumers.
• Be festive. Make your social media pages holiday-themed, just like a brick and mortar store would do. This is a great way to capture your audience and allow them to get into the holiday spirit.

The holiday season is quickly approaching and social media is more than ever playing a fundamental role in every retailer’s marketing campaign. Combining social media with email and search marketing will help leverage all of your marketing capabilities to ensure a very merry holiday season!