By Peri Kinder

If the thought of the upcoming holidays makes you want to retreat to an isolated cabin with a case of wine, you’re not alone. But you would be missing out on some unique opportunities to connect with your customers and strengthen bonds in your community.

We’re all so over COVID-19, but if it’s taught us anything, it’s that we are flexible and adaptable when it comes to running a business. This flexibility and creativity come in handy as you start marketing for the holiday season.

Here are three tips to help get you started:

Know your audience: There’s a good chance your customers are struggling. With job loss, cutbacks and insecurity at an all-time high, your clients might want to “get through” the holidays, instead of “celebrate”. It might not be time to roll-out your $10,000 holiday vacation retreat to Venice. In other words, read the room.

There are several ways to understand your client base and get valuable info you can use this season.

Engage with customers through messaging, phone calls or personalized emails, interacting with each person as an individual – not a potential sale. Ask meaningful questions and listen intently to what they say.

Create a survey, asking customers what their biggest challenges are this season or what they foresee for their future. Once you gather data, customize products, services and engagement opportunities for clients that resonate with their desires.

Create gift packages: Based on feedback, create gift packages your customers would want for themselves or to give to people they love. Offering gift baskets or promotions at different price points gives clients options when it comes to supporting your business. Maybe this season is a good time to launch an inexpensive online course or a scaled-down version of your most popular items.

Connect with a non-profit: People are inherently good. Even in these crazy times, people are volunteering and donating with many organizations recording the highest levels of donations in years. Find a non-profit your customer base would support (again with the feedback) and get creative as you launch a promotion or event that will benefit everyone involved. (Keep it safe, people. Wear a mask. SMH)

We’d love to hear your holiday marketing ideas. If you have something to share, submit your blog idea here.

Have a wonderful, successful and healthy holiday season!

Peri Kinder is a Happiness Coach, Certified Yoga Teacher, Meditation Instructor and Humor Columnist.