As marketers, your job is to be creative, creative, and more creative. Before a campaign is even launched, you’re already looking for ways to further the creativity and boost performance. Add to that those ideas that are churning around in your head about how phase 2 of said campaign can be even more creative, or the upcoming summer, or those year end goals, or, or…
No one ever said that being the marketer in the company was the easy job, and you’ve always got to be on the lookout for inspiration. Now besides the big ones; Christmas, national holidays, etc., when was the last time you looked to the calendar for inspiration?
Audiences respond well to creativity, especially when there’s a bit of factual information wrapped around it, so why not surprise and delight them with some offbeat holidays? Be it a social media item, an newsletter lead in, etc., put your creativity to use, and celebrate the oft less celebrated with your audience!
Coming up in June:
First Friday in June (June 1): National Doughnut Day
Yes, there is a national doughnut day, and no, Homer Simpson has nothing to do with it. Originally founded to recognize the Salvation Army “Lassies” who bravely took to the front lines to provide doughnuts and a morale boost to the troops.
If you’re in the food service industry, this should be a no brainer. If not, there are plenty of pop culture references to celebrate doughnuts. Alternatively, here’s a golden moment to bring a box of doughnuts to the team and feature a group photo on your social media channels. To boost fan interaction, toss out the, “What’s your favorite breakfast food?” question, or perhaps find out what their favorite Homer Simpson moment was. These questions might not have any specific relation to your product, but you never know what customer insight you might gain, and be able to use in the future.
June 5: World Environment Day
Supported by the United Nations, World Environment Day is used to spotlight important environmental issues. Each year, the organization takes on a different theme, with 2012 focusing on the Green Economy.
Did you miss Earth Day? Is your organization leading the charge on green technologies? A hot topic, and a dedicated day – this is your opportune time to focus on what your organization is doing to help the environment. Furthermore, this is a great time to point your community towards outside resources that support this theme.
June 6: Yo-Yo Day
Celebrating the birthday of the Duncan Toys Company founder Donald F. Duncan, Yo-Yo day spotlights, what else…the timeless classic Yo-Yo. Speculation places the Yo-Yo approximately at 3 to 4 thousand years old, with civilizations including the Greeks and Chinese spooling string and shooting the moon. And sorry Mr. Ma, but this day is not about you.
There are a number of ways you could go with this one. If you’re a solutions provider, the “Ups and downs” of everyday business life could be a focus. Likewise, an, “At the end of your rope?” theme can draw customers in. If you’re in the entertainment biz, perhaps talking about one of the oldest amusements on the planet might be the way to go.
June 9: Donald Duck Day
An internationally beloved cartoon character, June 9 celebrates Mr. Duck’s first appearance in “The Wise Hen,” June 9, 1934.
Be careful with this one, as Mr. Disney and his organization aren’t exactly keen on copyright infringement, but there’s no stopping you from celebrating! As kids (and grownups) who doesn’t love a good animated cartoon? Use this date as a chance to celebrate your inner child and what keeps you motivated, innovating, exploring, etc.
Little known fact: Donald Duck’s middle name is Fauntleroy. Who in your organization has the most unique middle name?
June 10: National Iced Tea Day
In 1904 tea plantation owner Richard Blechynden was set to sell his wares at the St. Louis World Fair. Unfortunately, it was an extremely hot day, and fair goers were in the mood for something a bit cooler than a cuppa. Blechynden took a risk, poured his hot tea over some ice, and thus – Iced Tea was born.
Iced Tea makes us think of the lazy, hazy days of summer. And although summer hasn’t officially started yet (see below), National Iced Tea day can be a great time to kick off your summer campaigns, or start reinforcing previously stated messages. Food industry marketers can seize this moment and offer deals to patrons, “C’mon in for a free Iced Tea on National Iced Tea Day,” etc. As the invention of Iced Tea arrived under adverse circumstances, you can always play the “necessity is the mother of all invention” card as well. If you’re particularly brazen, you can go out on a limb and bridge the gap between a century old beverage and semi-centarian musician Ice T.
June 13: Sewing Machine Day
The first records of a functional sewing machine date back to 1830, when Barthelemy Thimonnier created a machine that used a thread and a hooked needle to create the same chain stitched used in embroidery.
Now I realize that bridging the gap between your brand and a sewing machine might be a bit of a stretch, but only if you make it. Sewing Machine Day is a perfect time to delve into the world of rapid advancements in technology, and how your organization has contributed to making the world a better place. Perhaps something along the lines of, “Stitching it altogether,” can highlight your organizations’ services or products?
A sidenote: Thimonnier’s factory was burned to the ground by a mob of French tailors who feared job security as a result of this new invention.
World Juggler’s Day: Saturday closest to June 17
Just as the name suggests, World Juggler’s Day is set to recognize the skill and talent of those that keep multiple objects spinning, rotating, and otherwise defying gravity.
While the holiday is meant to celebrate those that can keep balls, pins, flaming batons, etc. in the air, there’s a very clear tie in here to celebrate just about anyone who works for a living. We’re all juggling multiple projects, tasks, appointments, people – let your community know about it, and better yet, what or how your products can better help them manage this balancing act.
Summer Solstice: June 20
Sometimes referred to as Midsummer (as in A … Night’s Dream), the Summer Solstice is the longest day of the year, and is the official meteorological beginning of the summer season.
Chances are you’ve already begun your summer campaigns, but June 20th is a great time to reinforce these messages. Perhaps a midsummer promotion is more to your liking? Celebrate the summer with fans with a, “20% off all purchases on Midsummer with the promo code Puck” and see who catches your literary reference. Leading up to the day, if your product or organization has something to do with the outdoors, you can always remind your audience that after this day, the days start getting shorter again, and which of your products they need to get the very best out of the summer.
Take your dog to work day: June 22
Established in 1999 by Pet Sitters International, Take Your Dog To Work Day is aimed at highlighting the fact that canines make for great companions, and encouraging their adoption from humane societies, animal shelters, and breed rescue clubs.
All memes aside, who doesn’t love a cute pooch? Take your dog to work day can be another great opportunity to highlight staff members, and their canine friends of course. Do you sell a physical product? Could a staff member’s dog have a good time with it, react to it, roll it around the office? Capture these moments and share them with your fans. You never know, you might end of with a new company mascot. But don’t take my word for it, have a view of Beast’s page and let the creativity fly!
Camera Day: June 29
While there’s no official record of who started Camera Day, June 29th can serve as good a date as any to celebrate the camera.
If your industry is in any way related to photographic images, this is an absolute do-not-miss. If you’re not related to a camera in any way, does your organization have an app? If so, there’s a camera sitting right next to your app. Likewise, chances are your social media channels have a number of images, either of your product, consumers, office team, etc. Camera Day can be a great way to encourage your customers to share their stories and include a picture (or 20). Action sports video camera maker GoPro capitalizes on the power of imagery every single day with their “Photo/Video of the Day” series – do the same here and encourage your fans to contribute with the content, perhaps even offering a prize to the top shutterbugs.
I’m sure one or more of these offbeat holidays have touched a nerve in your creative center, and now it’s only up to you to put this spark of inspiration to good use. Be they social media items, blog content pieces, a lead in to a newsletter, etc., surprising your community, and providing them with a bit of factual information, all the while driving your message home is a win/win situation for both parties!
Chris leachman via shutterstock