The Importance of Special Days in a Marketing Plan

Are you using special days in your marketing? Also known as relevant dates, special days cover a range of international, national and sector-specific awareness days and public holidays. This article is all about the importance of special days in a marketing plan.

What we will cover

Who is this for?

Before we get started on special days, it’s important we frame who should be engaging with what we call the “special days in marketing”.

Whenever we work with small business owners and their marketing teams they are all trying to do their version of content creation to tell their story and attract new customers.

Not every business has a consistent or effective approach to it, this is either because this content is very inwardly focussed, for example “Do you know we sell x?”, or it isn’t consistent, so their audience either doesn’t see them or understand what they are trying to say.

In our workshops, we help brands understand more about their best customers, and create the strategies to go and get more of them, one of the most valuable tools we use is a simple content planning spreadsheet.

This article is here to help you understand how to use it if you want to create a content strategy for 2024.

I’m here for the Content Calendar Template

Sure, here you go.

What are special days in marketing?

In the ever-evolving landscape of marketing, there exists a treasure trove of special days, we refer to it as the “Marketers’ Almanac.”

These days are strategic goldmines, offering opportunities to share your values, craft engaging campaigns, connect with audiences, and ride the waves of trending topics.

From traditional holidays to quirky observances, each day presents a unique canvas for marketers to paint their brand story. Whether it’s leveraging major shopping events, celebrating industry-specific milestones, or tapping into the fun and unexpected, this dynamic resource guides savvy marketers to navigate the calendar with creativity, relevance and consistency, ensuring their brands stay top-of-mind in the hearts of consumers throughout the year.

So what counts as a ‘special day’? There is no one list of special days that will suit every business, but it can be helpful to split them into four categories.

First, we have those national public holidays and memorable dates that are broadly recognised across the country. These include St. Valentine’s Day, Easter, Hallowe’en, Bonfire Night and Christmas. Most businesses will organise marketing activities around some of these dates.

Second, there are the big international awareness days, weeks and months. These include Veganuary, World Book Day, Earth Day, Star Wars Day (we had to mention that one!), World Fair Trade Day, World Oceans Day, World Breastfeeding Week, World Heart Day, Black History Month, World Mental Health Day, Movember, Human Rights Day, etc.

star wars day

Third, you have the more niche awareness days. Some are specific to the UK (Houseplant Week UK, National Tea Day, Coeliac UK Awareness Week, etc.), while others range from the interesting (World Trivia Day, National Pi Day, Name Your Car Day, etc.) to the downright bizarre ( International Nose Picking Day, Night of the Radishes, Bean Throwing Day, etc.)

Finally, there are the sector specific awareness and event days, which cover everything from employee recognition days (Administrative Professionals Week, Nurse’s Day, Volunteers’ week, etc.) to industry and sporting events (the Oscars, Wimbledon, Boat Race, Women’s World Cup, etc.)

But what is the importance of special days in a marketing plan? Here are four advantages of embracing these annual landmarks in your strategy.

The importance of special days in a marketing plan: 4 advantages

Planning big means thinking small

In our experience, marketing plans often fail in one of two ways. They either neglect the ‘big picture’, which results in an unconnected chain of activities. Or the big vision isn’t grounded enough in practical actions. The business may have every intention of launching a product that ties in with, for example, World Wildlife Day, but by the time the marketing team gets a campaign together, it’s late March and the conversation has moved on.

marketing plan template
A plan of content focussed around the wider “special days” conversations

By compiling a list of relevant special days and adding them into your annual content calendar, you can start to plan exactly how you will connect your content. For example, you can ensure you highlight the special day in your monthly newsletter and perhaps link it with an informative blog post. If you are targeting a big event like the London Marathon, you can start working on the details (will you be sponsoring a runner, holding a fundraiser, launching a new product, etc.)

Weekly accountability

Once you have your special days planned in, you can work backwards and break down your marketing activities into chunks including weekly action steps. It can be surprising how early you need to act to ensure a campaign has the assets it needs.

For example, you may have to start filming your video for World Mental Health Day (October 10th) in April, March or even earlier to allow time for post-production and stakeholder approval.

The importance of special days in a marketing plan is that you and your team can use regular triggers to hold yourselves accountable for delivering the campaign on time.

Brand values and business alignment

Special days are also a powerful way to broadcast your brand values. From Pride Week and International Women’s Day to Earth Day and National Human Rights Month, showing your active support can boost brand sentiment.

You can also use special days as a way to plan your corporate social responsibility activities while optimising your marketing.

Joining the conversation

There is a lot of talk in digital marketing about being ‘part of the conversation’, but what exactly is this conversation, and how do you get your business hooked into it?

When it comes to special days, one of the answers is ‘social media hashtags’. If you didn’t already know, hashtags are those keywords, preceded by the # symbol, that often show up in blue on Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn and other popular social media platforms. If social media were a continuously updating book, then hashtags would be its index. By clicking on a hashtag, the viewer can see a feed filtered by brands and individuals using that keyword.

Every awareness day will have its own set of hashtags. These can vary year by year, so be sure to research the current ones for the day you’re interested in. For example, February’s London Fashion Week is using the hashtag #FashionAwards.

join a wider conversation with your posts
Don’t miss the opportunity to join a wider conversation with your posts

What content can be planned?


It is common for a newsletter to be the heart of the content strategy, because due to GDPR we are required to dictate how often we will be in touch with our audience, which means we have deadlines to meet.

Let’s assume our readers have signed up for a monthly newsletter, we now have a 4-week cycle to define and gather the pieces of the newsletter puzzle every single month.

So we plot our newsletter into the planner, against a special days theme (strawberries in June, pumpkins in October) and then begin to plan the blog articles, events, product offers and introduction to be completed in the cycle in between each one.

With a little creativity and planning, it is perfectly possible to line this content up well in advance that will feel totally relevant to your audience and the time of year.

Blog content

Blog content is a great example because it requires either time or resource, and often multiple heads. For example in week one we may need to do keyword research, week two: write copy, week three: source images and publish, all in time for the newsletter to go out in week 4.

Great content that is visible and hooks readers to engage with your brand isn’t created quickly, it requires thought, time and quality resource.

Website updates

Creating new digital things can lead to a need for new website structures, template designs or new products and services, so again this needs factoring in, laying out changes in advance give everyone in the team time to plan and organise.

Advertising / PR / Marketing campaigns

The seasons change the way we think and buy, bobble hat in June? Unlikely (even though it would be half the price), however its essential when that cool nip catches us in Autumn.

The products we promote must be in line with the collective feeling for the time of the year or special day we are communicating. Therefore we should keep an eye on all our campaigns and line them up accordingly too.

Social media posts

Commonly used, the concept of a social media content calendar is pretty simple: a calendar broken down into weekly or daily slots into which your upcoming social media posts are scheduled.

With social media, there is a  connection between engagement (people liking, sharing and commenting on your social media posts) and reach (the number of people who actually get to see your content).

Every social media platform is different but they all include algorithms which reward engagement with reach.

Whether you’re posting links to mind-blowing articles or just sharing inspirational quotes or silly memes, the goal of your social media activity should always be to maximise engagement.

How do you do this?

As explained by Hootsuite, ‘Consistently showing up in your audience’s feed is the key to engaging them on social.’

Many businesses fail to grasp this and adopt an ‘ad-hoc’ approach to social media posting. Rather than building genuine relationships with people in their social networks, they jump on bandwagons or entice people with a series of fascinating posts before abandoning them for months at a time.

Local events or key business dates

All businesses organise their activities around important dates in the yearly calendar. We are passionate to support local businesses to gain as much visibility with their digital marketing in Devon, but these dates will include a mish-mash of public holidays and local, national, international and industry-specific events (e.g. expos, conferences, campaigns, etc.).

By adding these to your content calendar ahead of time, you can hook your campaigns into these events early and often beat your less well-prepared competitors to online attention.

For example, if you run a car dealership and you know that a major international motor show is coming to the UK in late summer, you can create early buzz in May or June by referencing the event and striking up conversations around it.

By the time the event comes around, you will have built up some serious momentum. You will have engaged in some genuine conversations, gathered audience insight and built up trust, putting you in a much better position to market your cars compared with less organised competitors.

Of course, there will still be the odd occasion where you will want to react to a breaking news event or jump on a fresh campaign but this will be the exception and not the norm.

Ultimately, you want your social media activity to become a series of interconnected campaigns that help carry your story to the widest possible audience.

We have even known businesses to plot operational tasks at the top of their content planners because they have started to use it as their go-to to-do list.

Polish before posting

When you start thinking of newsletters, content, advertising and social media activity as a set of inter-connecting campaigns, you will understand the value of running those campaigns properly.

That means investing time in creating quality assets. A content calendar gives you breathing space to organise this part of the process.

For example, rather than grabbing a few stock pictures and throwing in a couple of sentences, you could hire a graphic designer to create a series of branded images and a copywriter to ensure your writing is persuasive and leads on to a powerful hook.

You can also build in time to run some proper A/B tests and measure real social KPIs instead of relying on your gut feeling about how a campaign performed.

How NOT to use special days

Just because there is at least one special day for every day of the calendar, don’t be tempted to base your entire strategy on them. Not only would that be an inefficient use of your marketing budget, it can also come across as insincere. A brand should never try to be all things to all people, and that includes jumping on every special day bandwagon.

Some special days may be irrelevant or even offensive to your main audience. To use a silly example, a Catholic charity is unlikely to want to embrace Condom Week!

Get started with your Content Calendar Template

With those simple pointers in place, here is our 7 step guide to setting up your content calendar, we’re going to use social media as an example (but you could use the same process for creating blog content, newsletters etc):

  1. Audit and simplify your social media or marketing activites. Which platforms do you currently use? What type of content do you produce? Choose two to three social media networks that fit best with your target audience.
  2. Sign up for a social media management platform like Hootsuite or SocialBee, and connect your accounts.
  3. Download our 2024 calendar template or create your own content calendar.
  4. Look through the recurring special days, big events for this year, key business dates, and any trade shows or industry-specific dates and plot them into your fresh calendar.
  5. Decide on a realistic posting activity based on your resources. Remember, consistency is the golden rule so it is better to plan weekly posts and stick to it than to post in sporadic flurries.
  6. Start to plan content ideas for each platform in line with your calendarised days, some might be a short written post, some might involve an image or video that needs creating.
  7. Plot any large bits of content to be created well time ahead of time, ie if you need a video in August, schedule the filming in June – again you can use the content calendar for this.
  8. Create a content library for your assets. This need only be a shared folder with subfolders marked for either the month or the content type ie images, articles, videos, etc. Decide on a labelling format and stick to it.
  9. Design a workflow for you and your team. Make sure everyone is clear on their responsibilities and deadlines. Decide who will sign off and schedule the posts.
  10. Get creative! Look at what events are coming up and start thinking about how you can build a campaign that leads up to and beyond the event. What combination of posts will you put out? How will you ensure they reflect your brand?

See below for the monthly breakdown of key special days and promotional ideas.

Use special days the Vu way!

To help you fully appreciate the importance of special days in a marketing plan, book a place on our popular Marketing Plan Workshop. We will work with you on a wide range of practical activities, including building marketing personas, working out a budget, thinking about tone of voice, message and platform your customers are expecting and (of course) how to populate your content calendar.

In the meantime, we have a monthly calendar breakdown of each month.


This month, January features key events promoting sustainability and environmental awareness. Veganuary encourages a plant-based lifestyle, contributing to eco-friendly choices. National Blood Donor Month highlights the importance of voluntary blood donations, a crucial aspect of community health.

Walk Your Dog Month emphasizes outdoor activities for pets and owners, promoting an active and sustainable lifestyle. Big Schools Birdwatch 2023 and Human Trafficking Awareness events touch on environmental conservation and social justice.

Hat Day, World Snow Day, and Big Energy Saving Week further highlight the importance of responsible actions for the planet. These initiatives remind us of the interconnectedness between individual choices and the well-being of our environment.

The January Sales can be a time of opportunity or worry for small businesses. For some, the extra custom is a welcome boost while others feel themselves forced to squeeze their margins by bigger competitors.

Here are some ways to benefit from the sales season no matter what your situation:

Coupon Busters – Not in a position to cut prices for all customers? Reward your loyal ones instead! Offer coupons or free credit on purchases over the Christmas period and allow customers to redeem them during January. 

Don’t Cut – Upgrade! – Another way to give without cutting prices across the board is to offer a free upgrade. That way, customers still have to dip into their pockets first.

Automate – If you do want to run a January Sales campaign, add urgency with an automated countdown timer. Limit your offer by date (‘buy before 31st January’), volume (‘first 100 customers only’) or both and watch those orders come in.

The rule of thumb for these flash sales are big, bright, clear ads and firm conditions which you never extend no matter how tempted.

 Now on to some social media marketing tips:

  • In With the new. Are you offering something new which could become a hobby or a healthy habit? Tap into the New Year resolutions vibe with some appropriate social media memes and hashtags. Common threads include eating healthier, exercising more and saving money.
  • Social Savers. Want to boost your social media presence? Offer social only discounts. For example, you could send a promotional coupon by private tweet which customers can only redeem by bringing their mobile device into your store.

PS. It took Europe a little while to accept the Roman decision to move the beginning of the year to January 1st – about 1500 years, in fact! The Romans nominated the date, in 153 B.C., to fit in with their consular schedule. However, most European countries used either March or December 25th as New Year’s Day until the 16th Century when they gradually all came in line.


February brings a blend of cultural celebrations and health awareness. Black History Month honors African American contributions, while American Heart Month emphasizes cardiovascular health. LGBT History Month promotes inclusivity, and events like World Cancer Day raise awareness globally.

Safer Internet Day and National Apprenticeship Week focus on online safety and career development. Eating Disorder Awareness Week and Children’s Mental Health Week address mental health, while Pancake Day and St. David’s Day bring cultural festivities.

Presidents’ Day and World Rare Disease Day highlight governance and specific issues. Emotional Health Day encourages mental well-being discussions. These events showcase a diverse array of topics, fostering awareness and understanding.

Love it or hate it, St. Valentine’s Day is just around the corner and that means opportunities for businesses to jump on the hearts and roses bandwagon. 

So what could you do to squeeze a few extra sales out of this popular holiday (which is second only to Christmas when it comes to card sales?) Here are just a few suggestions as a starting point:

Two for one offer – St Valentine’s Day is all about relationships so if a customer orders one item, consider throwing in a freebie for their loved one.

Complimentary chocolates – Literally sending out a sweetener is a great way to put you in the good books with your customers. You don’t have to go overboard; a couple of wrapped chocs with each order shouldn’t break the bank.

Social Media competition – Get engaged with your customers (no, not literally) by running a ‘cutest Instagram pic’ competition or asking them to Tweet their best ‘Roses are red…’ poem.

If you’re still in need of inspiration, there’s no need to reinvent the wheel. Simply take a look at what other businesses are doing for Valentine’s Day and use this as a basis for your own promotions.

Good luck in your St Valentine’s Day promotions!

PS.St Valentine’s Day is all about meaningful connections. Email marketing is still one of the top ways to stay in touch with your customers and we can help you to design and set up a newsletter people will want to open – just like this one!

PPS. Did you know that Japanese men have it easy on St Valentine’s Day? In Japan, it is only the women who give gifts to their partners. The downside for men is that they are expected to return the favour a month later – with interest – by buying a reciprocal gift worth three times the value!


March is a month of awareness, celebration, and action, spanning various causes and cultural observances. B Corp Month emphasizes businesses committed to social and environmental impact.

Women’s History Month commemorates the achievements of women, while Nutrition Month focuses on healthy eating. Irish Heritage Month and Craft Month celebrate cultural richness and creativity. March for Meals and The Great American Cleanup promote community engagement.

Various health awareness initiatives include Deep-Vein Thrombosis Awareness Month, National Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month, and Developmental Disabilities Awareness Month.

Earth Hour and World Water Day underscore environmental concerns, while Purple Day raises epilepsy awareness.

Now that Valentine’s Day is out of the way, it’s time to switch focus to our long-suffering mothers. Yes, Mother’s Day is fast approaching on the horizon and there will be millions of sons and daughters across the UK anxiously scratching their heads as they look to purchase the ideal gift that will make mum happy.

Here are a few ideas to help you bring some of them to your (virtual) door and have them thanking their lucky stars that they found you in their hour of need.

Rush shipping and gift wrap service – You can guarantee that there will be a few wayward daughters and sons (mainly sons!) who will leave things until the last moment and then panic buy to get their gifts to mum’s place in time. You can be their lifeline this year by offering a rush shipping option (and a gift wrap service as an extra sweetener). It should go without saying that you actually have to be able to fulfil those orders!

Big day discount – A less risky alternative is to offer a whole day discount for orders placed in the run up to Mother’s Day. This can work well if your e-commerce store sells lots of items which would appeal to mums (beauty products, luxury foods, spa experience days, etc.)

A special mums gift – If your mailing list includes a lot of mums (and you have recorded their status on your mailing list), you can sweeten their day with a special gift, discount coupon or both.

Special event days also provide an opportunity to swell your mailing list. Social media is ideal for such a purpose and here are some ideas to maximise engagement in the lead up to Mother’s Day:

  • Twitter hashtag campaign: Create a memorable hashtag phrase and invite people to tell you their best mum stories or send in their favourite pics of mum.
  • Facebook Poll: Set up a  light-hearted Facebook poll (e.g. ‘What was your funniest ever Mother’s Day gift,’) and post the results as an infographic.
  • Pinterest Board: Create a Mother’s Day Pinterest board and ask for contributions.

Whatever you decide, don’t forget to include a call-to-action linked to your mailing list! For dedicated help with your social media marketing, please get in touch with the Vu team!

For an unusual spin on the Mother’s Day theme check out this bizarre tradition from the former Yugoslavia. On the big day, the children get to tie up their mums and she only gets released by paying them treats. How mums are treated on the other 364 days of the year we would hate to imagine!


April is a tapestry of awareness campaigns, fostering environmental, volunteer, and health consciousness, emphasizing environmental awareness, community engagement, and health advocacy. Earth Month and Keep America Beautiful Month promote sustainable practices and community cleanups.

National Garden Month celebrates nature and gardening’s importance. World Immunization Week underscores global health efforts. April is also National Volunteer Month, encouraging acts of service for community betterment.

In the realm of health, Autism Awareness, IBS Awareness, and Parkinson’s Awareness address specific issues, whilst Stress Awareness Month advocates mental health support.

Easter is coming up quickly on the horizon, so it’s time to think about how you can get into the spirit of things and build some buzz up to and throughout the four-day holiday.

And, tempting though they are, we’ve decided to steer clear of those obvious egg puns which always seem to start creeping into ads and marketing materials this time of year. 

Host an Easter Event – There is no greater way to get your seasonal products, services and marketing in front of people than by holding an Easter event of your own. Parents  are always on the lookout for Easter egg hunts, Easter bonnet design contests and similar activities to entertain the children so if that is your target demographic then you can’t go far wrong.

Your event could be held indoors or outdoors but if you choose the latter (e.g. a BBQ), we highly recommend you have a Plan B for if the weather turns against you.

Sponsor an event – If you feel running your own event is a bit too much to organise, scour the What’s On pages and find a nearby event that you could get involved with.

Sports clubs, schools and community groups will all be running events and will probably have sponsorship packages available. Prices can vary wildly so spend some time weighing up the costs and benefits of setting up a stand.

Run a virtual easter egg hunt – For an Easter event that won’t depend on the weather, consider setting up an egg hunt on your website. Upload a number of egg images on different pages of your website and offer a discount (or free gift) to people who contact you with the correct number. This is a great way to encourage people to explore your site and, if you combine the prize with an opt-in sign-up form, to grow your email list.

Don’t forget to make full use of your favourite social media channels with some Easter-related content. Here are a few ideas to get you started:

  • Facebook and Twitter GIFs: Sending an animated GIF has never been easier. Simply click the Tweet button or Facebook post box, select GIF and enter something Easter-related in the search bar. If you’re feeling particularly creative, design your own GIF (Canva is a free graphic design tool).
  • Easter Selfies on Instagram: Invite your followers to dress up in an Easter bonnet, stuff their faces with chocolate or otherwise make a spectacle of themselves.
  • Multiple Channel Promotions: Rather than stick to one social media platform, reach out to a wider demographic by mixing and matching channels. After all, you should never put all of your eggs in one basket!

PS.Click on a chick! An Easter-related pay per click advertising campaign can give you a jump-start over your rivals. Contact Vu for help with setting up and running PPC campaigns.

PPS. When it comes to consuming chocolate bunnies, there is only one place to start: a whopping 76% of us go straight for the ears every time. Only 5% of us go feet first and 4% tuck in to the tail.


May unfolds with three main themes: Health and Awareness, Culinary Delights, and Cultural Celebrations.

Health and Awareness dominate the month, spanning Maternal Mental Health Awareness Week, Sun Awareness Week, and World Asthma Day. Additionally, there’s emphasis on Mental Health Awareness Week, promoting well-being.

Culinary Delights shine through National Barbecue Month, National Hamburger Month, and National Salad Month, encouraging diverse gastronomic experiences.

Cultural Celebrations include Europe Day, National Children’s Day UK, and International Day of Light, fostering unity and understanding. May encapsulates a tapestry of health advocacy, culinary exploration, and cultural appreciation.

As you may have noticed, Star Wars is a popular film with the Vu team so what better to focus on for May.

Unless you have been living in a Sarlacc pit for the past couple of decades (in which case, email marketing is probably the least of your concerns), May 4th is known as Star Wars Day due to its similarity to the catchphrase, ‘May the force be with you!’ You may or may not be a fan yourself but a proportion of your audience are likely to be. After all, the Star Wars brand has spanned multiple generations.

This is one bandwagon that is really fun to hop onto since there are so many creative ways to make use of the Star Wars themes and motifs in your marketing campaigns. Here are a few suggestions:

Mass Star Wars Discount – If you are fortunate enough to sell Star Wars themed merchandise then this is the time to shift it. Have a rummage through your real or virtual store room, put any Star Wars related products on to your front page (or into your special offers widget) and take a lightsaber to the price. If it won’t shift on May 4th, it probably never will. 

Go Heavy With the Star Wars Theme – There are so many ways to incorporate the Star Wars branding into your digital marketing at this time. Just be careful not to infringe any intellectual property by copying designs or otherwise suggesting there is a connection between you and the official Star Wars product.

 Commonly used thematic elements include:

  • Intro montage (tapering letters on a space background)
  • The famous Star Wars logo
  • Lightsaber duels
  • Dark versus light
  • Quotes from the movies
  • Character costumes/appearance (Leia’s hairdo, Chewbacca’s bandolier, Yoda’s ears, etc.) 

Movie Clips – For the really ambitious, you could create your own YouTube or self-hosted video parodying a Star Wars scene. You will need to get started ASAP and treat the project seriously. Speak to Vu to find out about our video production services.

Alternatively, create an animated GIF or a themed banner. Again, you should make it absolutely clear that your creation is in no way officially endorsed. You don’t want to risk being sued!

To make best use of social media during Star Wars Day, try the following:

  • Twitter Hashtags: Adding the appropriate Twitter hashtags to your Tweets can help to boost your marketing but which hashtags are the best to include? Popular choices tend to be #maythefourthbewithyou, #starwarsday and #maythe4thbewithyou. Of course, you can never know for sure which hashtags will end up taking off so keep an eye on the Twitter trends in the lead up to the big day (RiteKit and Tweeplers are great tools to explore).
  • Instagram ‘Star Wars Stories’ Competition: If Instagram is popular with your customers, invite them to create a Star Wars themed story with the winner receiving a free gift or discount.
  • Yoda Speak: One of the easiest ways to get involved in the Star Wars buzz is to emulate the speech of everyone’s favourite Jedi Master. ‘This post read you should. Great wisdom for you it will provide.’

We would love to see how you decide to incorporate Star Wars into your digital marketing so please share your creations with us.

PS. Remember E.T. the Extraterrestrial? It seems he wasn’t unique to the film of the same name? The Asogians, represented by senator Grebleips and featured in the ‘Phantom Menace,’ bear an eerie resemblance to the cute Eighties alien. Anyone any good at reading backwards?


June unfolds with a focus on Health and Awareness, Community Engagement, and LGBTQ+ Pride.

Health and Awareness campaigns include Men’s Health Month, raising awareness of men’s well-being, and Acne Awareness Month, shedding light on skin health. Safety takes the forefront with National Safety Month, promoting a secure environment.

Community Engagement is highlighted through events like Volunteers Week, emphasizing the power of volunteering. World Environment Day and Great Big Green Week underscore the importance of environmental awareness. June concludes with a celebration of diversity and acceptance during LGBTQIA+ Pride, uniting communities globally.

The good thing about Father’s Day is that most businesses can get involved in some way or another. Businesses involved in clothes, books, homes and gardens, sports, electronics, dining and music can all create dad-specific promotions.

The challenge is to come up with something interesting and unique enough to grab attention. You will need to send out a clear message with a strong call-to-action to stand out from the crowd.

One thing to remember is that many customers buying for dads will be partners and children, so make sure your message appeals to them as well.

Dad-Related Promotions – Father’s Day is probably one of the few days in the year that you can get away with blatant gender stereotyping so if you sell any products or services related to football, beer, steak, garden tools or fast cars then it’s time to get them up on that virtual shelf. Neckties are consistently popular gifts but hammers are also high on the list! If you own a bricks and mortar store, include some free gift wrap for those last ditch gifts – kids and spouses will love you for it!

Online Gift Guide – If there are quite a few items in your inventory that could pass as Father’s Day specials, apply a discount and then reference them in a special online ‘Father’s Day Gift Guide.’

You could present this as a blog post, an email attachment or even a one-off customised home page (we can help you set this up if you are unsure how to do it).

Partner With Local Businesses – Even if you don’t provide any services or products that are specific to dads you can still benefit from the occasion. Partnering with a local business can stimulate business for you both and is also great fun.

For example, you could team up with a nearby restaurant, offering an exclusive discounted meal deal with every product sold.

Here are some social media marketing tips to give you some extra inspiration.

  • Twitter Hashtags: Using, you can check for related hashtags that may be trending as the special day approaches.
  • ‘Tag a Dad’ Campaign: Do your customers know a dad who deserves a discount? Use your Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube or LinkedIn accounts to launch a ‘tag a dad’ campaign and send each nominee a special Father’s Day discount code.
  • Film a Dad Dance: Engage your audience and entertain yourself by asking your followers to film their dad (or ‘a dad’) doing a dad dance. You could even add a competition element with a dad hamper or some other special gift for the winner. 

PS. Do you feel you’re missing out on Father’s Day? Well it’s never too late to start. Indian Ramjit Raghav decided to get in on the act in 2010 by becoming a first time dad – at the ripe old age of 94!


July brings a blend of themes, with a focus on Enjoyment and Awareness. Culinary Delights take center stage with Ice Cream Month, National Grilling Month, and National Blueberry Month, inviting indulgence in seasonal treats.

National Independent Retailer Month celebrates local businesses, promoting community support. Plastic-Free July encourages eco-friendly habits, urging individuals to reduce plastic usage. The month observes International Kissing Day and World Chocolate Day, adding sweetness to the calendar.

July combines joyous celebrations with environmental consciousness, fostering a well-rounded awareness. World Emoji Day and Nelson Mandela International Day symbolize cultural diversity and global unity. The month concludes with Earth Overshoot Day, urging reflection on sustainable living and environmental responsibility.

Emojis are a proven way to increase engagement, especially with younger customers, so there’s a real reason for making use of them.

Here are some ideas:

Emojify your Brand! – This creative activity can last well beyond World Emoji Day! Get together with a talented illustrator and create an emoji set just for your brand. Be consistent with style and colour and promote your brand in new and exciting ways, especially on social media.

Create a Shop Mural – If you have a physical shop, brighten the walls with murals made from tiny emojis. How? There are apps and even free Google scripts which use color matching techniques to turn any bitmap image into emoji art.

Here are some social media marketing tips for World Emoji Day.

  • Twitter Hashtags: Simply use and monitor the #WorldEmojiDay hashtag to stay in with the Twitter crowd.
  • Instagram Design an Emoji Competition: Offer a discount or gift for the funniest or most creative emoji posted on Instagram.
  • Create a YouTube Emoji Movie: Follow in the footsteps of Disney by creating a short, animated YouTube video story comprising just music, sound effects and emojis.

If you don’t fancy World Emoji Day there are plenty of other weird and wonderful days to get involved with. Build a Scarecrow Day (7th), Cow Appreciation Day (15th), System Administrator Appreciation Day (26th) and Take your Houseplants for a Walk Day (27th) are just a few we’ve stumbled across.


August is a harmonious blend of education, culinary pleasures, health advocacy, and meaningful remembrance.

Commemorative events such as World Breastfeeding Week, International Youth Day, and International Day of Remembrance highlight important social issues.

Culinary Delights include Peach Month, and Afternoon Tea Week, celebrating diverse flavors. Health Awareness campaigns cover Immunization Awareness Month and Psoriasis Action Month.

From playful observances like Playday to thoughtful ones like National Lazy Day, August offers a mix of joy and reflection. The month concludes with National Women’s Equality Day, recognizing strides in gender equality.

If music is the food of love then festival-goers will be licking their lips in anticipation of August’s festival line-up.

From local favourites like Newquay’s Boardmasters to the picturesque Green Man Festival and the star-studded line-ups at Reading and Leeds, there are plenty of events to look forward to. 

Here are some tips on making the most of the mayhem.

Get in on the Act – The best way to get involved in the buzz is to set up a stall at a local festival. It can be easy to get carried away with the hype so make sure that the costs are justified by your expected ROI. Stalls too expensive or all gone? There may be other sponsorship opportunities if you speak to the organisers.

Create a Mini-Fest  – You may not be able to pull off the next Woodstock but if you have enough space for some live music, consider calling up some local acts for a mini music marathon of your own. Just make sure you have the necessary licences in place and you’re not using any official festival logos or branding.

Don’t forget to get active on social media too. Here are some ideas.

  • Twitter Artist Poll: Setting up a poll is easy on Twitter. Simply click Tweet and select the poll icon. Choose up to four artists at an upcoming festival and ask your followers which they are looking forward to most. 
  • Instagram/Snapchat Photo Frame : If you are setting up a stall, design a giant photo frame and have a colleague take a snap of people posing within it. Share the results on Instagram or Snapchat.

PS. The world is full of weird and wonderful festivals but the Spanish El Salto del Colacho takes some beating. Men dressed up as the devil take it in turns to jump over several infants lined up on a mattress in the street.


September unfolds with themes encompassing Music, Nature, Health Awareness, and Education.

Classical Music Month celebrates the richness of musical heritage, while Wilderness Month beckons outdoor enthusiasts to embrace nature. National Preparedness Month focuses on readiness for emergencies, and National Food Safety

Education Month promotes healthy eating habits. Hispanic Heritage Month honors the contributions of Hispanic cultures. Alzheimer’s Awareness, Blood Cancer Awareness, and Childhood Cancer Awareness underscore health advocacy.

Secondhand September encourages sustainable fashion choices, and Organic September promotes eco-friendly living. Education is highlighted with events like National Read a Book Day and International Literacy Day. As September unfolds, it offers a harmonious blend of cultural appreciation, health consciousness, and educational endeavors.

Did you know, you don’t have to sell blazers, shiny black shoes or pencil sharpeners to profit from the back to school buzz? With a bit of creative thinking about the needs and preferences of your target market, your business will be able to benefit from the start of the brand new academic year.

Here are a few ideas to get those grey cells working. 

Last Chance Saloon – As we leave the summer hols behind, there could be a chance to squeeze one last burst of activity from parents. Many will be cash-strapped by now but still desperate to entertain the kids. Can you offer ‘last chance’ reductions on activities or products (e.g. soft play sessions, computer games or horse-riding lessons)?

Early Bird Offers – There will always be those super-organised people who like to get in early to avoid a back to school stampede. Reach out to the bargain hunters by offering ‘early bird’ deals (anything from half-price haircuts to discounts on diary apps could work).

Umm…Go Back to School – Vu school that is. On 17th October, we are holding a Digital Marketing Training Day which will take you through everything from identifying your target market and building personas to executing a content plan. Book now to secure your front of the class place.

 Make sure you make full use of social media when planning your back to school marketing campaigns. Here are a couple of ideas:

  • Tweet the Homework Excuse: Ask followers to tweet their best late homework excuse. Choose your favourite four and turn them into hashtags. Then create a poll and ask your followers to vote on the best. We’re bagging #dogatemyipad 
  • Pinterest Back to School Board : For parents who are visually inspired, organised and social media savvy, a Pinterest board of back to school ideas will be irresistible.

PS. Gandhi said you should be the change you want to see in the world. He would have been impressed with this school in the Philippines which has been completely built out of plastic Pepsi bottles. Reduce, reuse, recycle!


October is a month of promoting good health and social impact.

Breast Cancer Awareness Month and AIDS Awareness Month focus on health, encouraging screenings and awareness. Domestic Violence Month and Bully Prevention Month address social issues, promoting safety and kindness. Adopt a Shelter Dog Month advocates for animal welfare.

October also hosts International Walk to School Month, promoting physical activity. World Mental Health Awareness Day encourages dialogue about mental well-being. The month concludes with Halloween, a festive cultural celebration.

The witching hour fast approaches and businesses will soon be ordering in their annual supplies of zombie face paint and fake vampire blood. What can you do to stand out this Halloween?

Make it Real – Wearing a set of plastic fangs and playing creepy laughter through dodgy speakers just doesn’t cut it in today’s techy world. Today, scaring people is all about VR, AR and 360 degree footage. You may not quite pull off the freaky Fanta 13th Floor lift ride but with some creative thinking and a minor investment you might just get close!

Terrifying Transformations – Do you have a stock room or area you could transform into a dungeon, torture chamber, haunted house or graveyard for the Halloween period? Top Shop pulled in the crowds along Oxford Street last year by creating a mock-up of the Hawkins lab and Will Byers’ creepy room from the Netflix series, ‘Stranger Things.’ What can you conjure from the depths of your imagination?

Freaky Food – Restaurants, pubs and food retailers have the ideal opportunity to get into the Halloween spirit by cooking up some ghoulish grub. Pickled onion eyeballs, graveyard gravy, candy floss cobwebs – you get the idea!

As always, social media is there to help you spread your mischief far and wide. Try:

  • Creepy Costumes: Apply a Halloween discount – but only if your customers share their costume snaps on your Instagram page.
  • Platform Rebrand: Create a unique visual Halloween theme and apply it across all of your social media platforms.
  • Spooky Snapchat Filters: Snapchat sell filters based on location. Set up a frightening filter in an unspecified area and encourage your followers to find it – if they dare.

PS. What happens when you cross a horror cult classic with the latest tech wizardry? Svedka vodka hit the nail on the head by combining the concept of the cursed video footage (a la ‘The Ring’) with remarketing technology. The result? Those who clicked the cursed video were stalked by freaky ads until they passed the curse on to another victim. Genius!


Movember is a biggie for November, encouraging mustache-growing for male health awareness. Whilst Lung Cancer Awareness Month, Pancreatic Cancer Awareness Month, National Healthy Skin Month and Gluten-Free Diet Awareness Month also focus on health.

National Adoption Month promotes adoption awareness. National Gratitude Month fosters appreciation. Peanut Butter Lovers’ Month is paired (conflictingly) with National Diabetes Awareness Month.

National Scholarship Month focuses on educational opportunities. World Vegan Day promotes plant-based living. National Novel Writing Month encourages creativity. National Military Family Month honors military families.

Hot on the heels of Halloween but before the big Christmas build-up comes Bonfire Night. It might seem the poor cousin of the other two events but Bonfire Night can provide a great opportunity for SMEs to place their products in front of customers looking for a fun and social experience.

Here are some ideas to set your marketing efforts off with a bang! 

It’s all About the Imagery – From spiralling sparklers and whizzing Catherine wheels to exploding rockets and ballistic bangers, Bonfire Night marketing is all about colour, noise and fun. Jazz up your website background, social media headers and ad artwork to set the scene. Use colourful language to push your special offers (explosive deals, sparkling specials and flaming hot discounts, etc.)

Host your own Bonfire – If you can book some outdoor space, get permission for a large bonfire and some fireworks and serve up some warming grub (treacle toffee, jacket spuds, steaming soup, etc.) you have all you need to create a community event. Hand out free branded items to make that connection between fun and your business.

Sponsor a Local Bonfire – If you don’t have the time or resources to run your own event, explore sponsorship opportunities at other bonfires. Rates can be low due to reduced competition.

Here are some tips for making the most out of social media during Bonfire Night:

  • #RememberRemember: Use the traditional Bonfire Night phrase to create Twitter GIFs based on your most appealing products.
  • YouTube Drone Flyover: If you have a regional following, fly a drone over the area for a unique view of the celebrations. Just steer clear of those rockets!
  • Out and About: Bonfire Night is perfect for mobile-heavy platforms like Snapchat and Instagram. Design eye-catching filters for selfies or create an engaging video or carousel ad.

If you are in the vicinity of St Peter’s School, York, don’t expect to see a guy on the bonfire. Guy Fawkes attended the school and the teachers have clearly never felt comfortable about burning an effigy of a former pupil!


December unfolds with a focus on Human Rights, Fun Festivities, and Social Causes.

Carrying on from Movember, Decembeard raises awareness for bowel cancer. National Human Rights Month prompts reflection on universal rights and freedoms. Disability History Month highlights the experiences of people with disabilities.

Operation Santa Paws combines holiday spirit with pet welfare. Bingo Month adds a touch of gaming delight.

On a serious note, World AIDS Day and Tree Dressing Day symbolize global solidarity and environmental consciousness. National Grief Awareness Week promotes understanding and support.

Small Business Saturday supports local enterprises, aligning with International Day of Persons with Disabilities. The year concludes with festive celebrations, Human Rights Day, and preparations for the coming year.

With over 35% of UK buyers starting their Christmas shopping in October (or earlier) it’s definitely time to get those Christmas marketing campaigns up and running.

If you’re looking for some inspiration for ways to stand out over this ultra competitive festive period, try these tips for size:

It’s a Wrap! – What is the one surefire way to make sure all of your customers see your Christmas advertising? Put it on your pre-Christmas packaging. Whether you create a design yourself or get an outside company to do it, leverage your wrap to make a memorable impact.

Tell a Christmas Story – From ‘The Nutcracker’ and ‘The Snowman’ to ‘A Christmas Carol’ and Tolkien’s ‘Letters from Father Christmas,’  everyone likes a good Christmas yarn. This year, focus your campaigns on creating your very own version of a classic tale – or something completely unique. Make your product the invaluable tool which helps the hero succeed.

Be Search Aware – Just before the big day, there is usually a massive spike in Christmas related search queries. Keep your eye on the ball so you can get on board with those trends in your industry.

Here are some social media tips:

  • The 12 tweets (boards, snaps, etc.) of Christmas. Based on the classic ‘Twelve Days of Christmas,’ this technique can be adapted for most social media platforms. Post one per day in the build-up and end with a special treat.
  • Digital Advent Calendar: This is similar to the previous idea but extended to cover the whole month. Try to add value and variety with a different piece of content (whitepaper, infographic, explainer video,  etc.) each day.
  • Back a Cause: Iceland showed just how to harness the passion of a cause with their #NoPalmOilChristmas Twitter campaign. Talk about turning a negative into a positive! Can you take a (sustainably sourced) leaf from their book and put an ethical twist on Christmas?

The Marketers almanac: starting over again

Once you get into the cycle the second year is easier as you will have templates for content to be reused and layered upon for the following year.

We would love to hear from you, share your ideas, campaigns, content that has worked well on your platforms.

Do you know anyone who may be interested in this project?

Click to share:

digital marketing

Digital Marketing

Digital marketing brings finesse to your business. It provides the sheen, the small details by which customers subconsciously judge you and your business.


Businesses recognise the value of co-creating their strategies with outsiders who will forensically tease and test assumptions during a creative non-critical collaborative session.

copywriting services


Punchy, concise Copywriting services, will bring your small business subtle rewards in brand perception, created with your marketing segment in mind, you gain credibility and SEO while artfully selling the benefits of what your business does best.