The holiday season is upon us, and it’s essential for your business to capitalize on this time of year. It can be very challenging to keep up with the demand for goods and services during this period, so you must take advantage of this season’s many opportunities. One of the easiest ways to boost sales is through marketing. It can be challenging for small to mid-sized businesses to believe they can recoup their marketing budget once the holidays have ended. However, this isn’t the case. There are several ways that you can effectively market your business this holiday season without breaking the bank.

Share Your Small Business’s Story through Social Media

More than half of consumers said they are more likely to buy from a company they follow on social media. This means that if your business is still not using social media, no is as good of a time as any to join. It’s very easy to get your message out there, and it’s free. You can easily market your business with multiple platforms to reach out to your customers, such as Instagram and Facebook. Consider offering discounts to those who follow your business on social media. This will allow you to grow your network and attract more potential customers.

Capitalize on Community Events

An effective way to market your business during the holiday season is by participating in local community events. These can be events such as tree-lighting ceremonies and visits from Santa Claus. If you’re unsure how to get involved, check your community website for a list of upcoming events. You can also add your company’s name to a program or partner that will allow you to bring your products to various holiday events. These include church gatherings, school concerts, and New Year’s Eve celebrations. A strong connection with your community can help you grow your customer base.

Leverage Charitable Giving as a Marketing Tool

While charitable donations can help support worthy organizations, you may not be aware of the other benefit of giving: marketing. Through charitable giving, you can encourage your customers to do business with you and support the organizations you care about. According to a survey, 56 percent of Americans would travel an extra 10 minutes to purchase a product if it supports a cause they care about. A marketing program focused on connecting with customers who care about local causes can help raise awareness for both the organizations and businesses you support.

Offer Gift Cards

A gift card can be a great way to keep your customers focused on your business during the holidays and attract more people. Even if your business doesn’t typically offer gift cards, you’d be surprised to find many types of establishments sell them — from auto shops to salons and even exterminators. About 72 percent of shoppers end up spending more than the amount on the gift card. It can help you grow your customer base and keep you at the top of their mind after the holidays. You can also encourage your customers to return to your store after the holiday season by offering a $5 gift card for every purchase over a certain price point.

Create a Customer Database

It’s important that you have a customer database to capitalize on the increased traffic that your business will receive during the holiday season. Many businesses don’t want to bombard their customers with marketing messages, but most will gladly share their email addresses to receive promotional emails. After the holiday season has passed, take the time to gather information about your customers and send them a welcome email. You can also use a low-cost marketing tool such as Constant Contact or MailChimp.

Partner with Other Small Businesses

Partnering with other local businesses can be an excellent marketing resource. It can help boost your customer base and make your neighbors feel good about shopping at your store. Partnering with other businesses can also help boost the sales of your store. You can offer a multi-business discount or allow your partners to pass out coupons and vice versa.

Send a Personalized New Year’s Card

Sending a New Year’s card to your customers can help boost the sales of your business following the holiday season. It’s a simple way to thank them for their business during the holidays and remind them of the importance of supporting local businesses. The holidays remind us of the value of community, and in your card, you can include exciting news about your business and future events in the coming year.