The holiday season is upon us. For many, it’s a time for family, a time for presents, a time for great food, and a time for holiday fun. For car dealers, it’s also a time to sell some cars. Would you believe that holiday blogs—even those without an automotive focus—can help you do that? Does your dealership need holiday blogs? At Phantom Copy, we think it does!
Why Do Some Dealerships Avoid Holiday Blogs?
Some dealerships end up avoiding holiday blogs altogether. Though we will always advise against this, it’s an option and we even understand why they do it. On paper, holiday blogs don’t seem to do a whole lot. That’s because, we are often trained to only look at conversion numbers, but conversion numbers never tell the whole story.
This means that the chances of this blog getting you VDP or SRP views isn’t strong compared to other auto-focused blogs. But, that’s not the point. The goal is to get local people to be on your site, create a lasting impression, and help them.
Doesn’t a Holiday Blog Only Provide a Temporary Boost?
A good holiday blog will create a spike in traffic that can sometimes even outdo your homepage. It’s a temporary spike of course. Once Christmas comes, your Christmas blog is going to tumble down the rankings, but afterward what we often see is your overall organic traffic gets a lasting boost.
Why does this happen? Because your local blog increased your local dealership’s local domain authority. This means that more people that perform local auto searches end up on your site after the local holiday blog’s success than did before your local holiday blog gained traction.
My Dealership Doesn’t Sell Christmas Trees
We know that you don’t sell Christmas trees unless you have some sort of side hustle going on. You want your dealership to appeal to people who live in the area and who are looking for a car. Is everyone that’s going to buy a Christmas tree, go to a Christmas light show, or see Santa looking for a car? No. But sometimes you win by precision and sometimes you win by volume. However, in this case, that volume is all local people who actually have the potential to visit your dealership or even those that have before and need a friendly reminder that you exist. You know what else it does too? It truly makes you look like a part of the community.
Some dealerships do a lot of work and spend thousands of dollars building up their image in their community. For many, this means sponsoring local events, donating to charity, and being involved. All of that is great, but a blog is far cheaper and can even be more effective at helping you project that image because you are literally helping someone local in a time of need when that need isn’t even auto-related.
What Makes a Good Holiday Topic?
A good holiday topic combines your location or general area with something that’s time sensitive. If you are writing about a holiday, chances are you will have the time-sensitive part down. You can’t cut down Christmas trees in January and you’re not going to go on a turkey trot come spring.
The biggest mistake we see in the space is a blog that just focuses on the holiday. Here you won’t win because you lose the local angle. Don’t write a gift ideas blog (unless you tie it back to accessories at your dealership) and don’t write a recipe blog unless it’s a recipe that is somehow very unique and specific to your area.
Will People Actually Search For it?
Remember that recipe that we just mentioned? Even if you have one that checks the boxes of being unique and specific to your area, are people actually going to search for it? If it’s your grandma’s recipe for deep-fried Christmas meatloaf, no one is going to type that into a search engine. People will search for where to cut their own Christmas trees and the best meat markets for Thanksgiving turkey though.
If you need help figuring out if a topic will be searched for, there are a lot of tools that can be used to determine a keyword’s viability even down to your local area. A simple Google search is often a good first step.
Is the Information Hard to Find or Collect?
The best piece of content you can come up with is going to be something that provides information that is either hard to find or at least hard to reference in one spot. More than likely, people are going to be able to find where to cut their own Christmas trees in your area, they can even see reviews and locations by scrolling through a Google Maps search.
Just providing a directory that gives people nothing more than that isn’t going to set you apart. What will be is doing a deep dive on those tree farms, finding out when their season starts, what hours they have, how much they cost, what kind of trees they have, and what other events might be going on at the farm. Then you put all that information in one spot so people can properly weigh their options without doing all the hard work you just did.
Provide the Resources Your Locals Want
It’s going to be pointless if you direct people to all these great tree farms and don’t actually give them the tools that they need. This means providing links back to their sites, contact information when it makes sense and even an interactive Google Map embed.
Yes, this often means providing links that lead off your website, which means people will leave your site. Again, that’s not a bad thing. What experience would you rather have? Get to a website that has all the information you want but doesn’t let you take the next step—which is often going to a different website. Or one that lets you take care of the whole process from research to discovery to decision? If your site is going to leave a bad taste in people’s mouths when they come for a holiday blog, then you might as well not have created the blog at all.
What Holiday Topics Should Car Dealers be Writing About?
There is so much to write about during the holiday season that many of our more enterprising dealers consider a temporary increase in their content packages just to make sure they can still cover all the auto topics that they need to while also providing all the local content that people are searching for during the holidays.
The list below is by no means all-inclusive, and many areas will have their own traditions and events that will warrant a blog post or even a landing page that is entirely different from those listed below. These types of things a good content team can often uncover on their own, but with you as our boots on the ground, it’s always helpful to have those conversations ahead of the season so that writers like us can give the locals in your area the content they need.
Not everyone thinks of a restaurant when they think about Thanksgiving, but more and more people are looking for two things. Restaurants—or caterers—that can provide food for their Thanksgiving so they can get out of the kitchen or restaurants that are open on Thanksgiving so they can get out of the house.
We intake a lot of calories on Thanksgiving, and many are looking for a way to burn that off. You have the potential to be their resource on what Turkey trots and runs are in the area, how people sign up, how much it costs, and more.
Christmas Tree Cutting
Cutting down a Christmas tree or even picking one out is a time-honored tradition. Find the best Christmas tree farms in your area and highlight them for your local customers. Make sure you are giving them all the resources they need to make the right decision.
There are a ton of events going on in pretty much anyone’s area. This can spawn multiple blogs with focuses on everything from parades and light shows to visits with Santa and other holiday-themed activities.
New Years’ Events
Most communities will have no shortage of New Years’ get-togethers and events. Make sure to highlight these to take advantage of the tail end of the holiday season before January hits. Don’t forget to highlight any fireworks shows too!
Should All Businesses Have Holiday Blogs?
Absolutely! Phantom Copy is growing fast and we’ve expanded outside of just dealerships, providing many of the great SEO tricks and services that have made us so successful in the automotive space to industries that are only just now coming around to the idea that SEO is more than just having a website that looks nice (if they even have that).
Almost all brands can benefit from holiday blogs. If you have a local area, then holiday blogs can do great for you, and even if you don’t, if you at least provide a product and the holiday season is important to that product, then you can build on that with holiday blogs that highlight your product for the gift-giving season.