Content creation – it’s something of a buzzword at the moment. It seems as though marketers can’t get enough of talking about it, whether it’s for websites, email campaigns or magazine articles.
However, there’s been very little said about the single most important document you’re likely to put together this December – your letter to Santa.
So how do you make sure that your letter is read and the contents noted amid all the noise of other letter writers, begging for the latest gadgets, handbags and mind-bogglingly expensive trainers?
Here’s our five top tips on catching the eye of your target audience…
1. Attention to detail. We know that Santa is currently busy compiling his own files on who’s been naughty or nice and, being a bit of a grammar ninja, he’ll definitely be checking it twice. SC won’t take kindly to any glaringly obvious errors. He knows when you are sleeping, he knows when you’re awake – and trust me, he also knows if you’ve written ‘could of’ instead of ‘could have’, mixed up your their and there or, horror of horrors, used a grocer’s apostrophe to describe the toy’s or shoe’s you would like. Shudder.
2. Tone. Rise above the pleading, the avaricious and the downright desperate. Be friendly – ask how he is, send your best wishes and your hopes that he’s not too busy. Heck, even apologise for bothering him if you have to. But never, ever, dictate. I want doesn’t get; remember that you’re writing a wish list, not a list of demands.
3. Brand guidelines. If you want an iPhone, say you want an iPhone. If you’re not fussy about the make and just want something with a good camera, it’s a smartphone. Lego is Lego, not a cheap imitation, so give it the capital L it deserves. Don’t say PlayStation if you mean an X-Box and vice-versa – specifics are good and help to avoid costly errors. And if you’re really odd and are after a portable building, please remember that Portakabin is a trade name and consequently needs a capital P.
4. Structure. When he reads your letter, the question Santa’s going to be asking is why? Why do you deserve a Nintendo Switch? What have you done to earn that bottle of expensive gin? Keep it brief but keep it balanced – nobody has a God-given right to Gucci handbag, so clearly and concisely state your argument for why it should be yours.
5. Include a call to action. Obviously, Santa has a large contingent of elves working 12-hour shifts in his workshop, but do include a website link if you think it will help. Even semi-fictional seasonal figures have to shop online occasionally. It shows you’re thinking about your audience and not just yourself, and might even nudge you up a place or two on the good list.
Bear in mind these tips and hopefully you’ll be waking up to what you asked for on Christmas morning rather than a consignment of coal. Never, ever forget to leave out a carrot for Rudolph, a glass of sherry and a mince pie for the man himself (or a gluten-free, vegan alternative, just in case he’s intolerant).
And remember – good writing habits are for life not just for Christmas.