Amanda Greteman Brent Thomsen Scott Holton
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Giving Thanks as a Business this Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving is the time of year where we gather with our loved ones to share a meal and give thanks for the blessings in life. We can actually trace back what is believed to be the first Thanksgiving celebration to November 25, 1621, when the Plymouth colonists and the Wampanoag shared a meal together as tentative, but needed allies. Nearly 250 years later, President Abraham Lincoln proclaimed a national day of Thanksgiving during the heat of the Civil War.

Now 400 years from that first meal, we gather here to look at some of the ways you and your business can show thanks to those who have found you worthy of patronage over the last year. Let’s look at it through the lens of a Thanksgiving dinner (i.e. the amount of effort it would take to pull off).

Store-bought pie
It’s a staple of the Thanksgiving meal. Whether you prefer pumpkin, apple, banana cream or any other number of tasty treats, everyone looks forward to the after-dinner dessert. It’s expected, and buying it premade is about as easy as it comes.

This is your basic ‘I acknowledge that there is a holiday today’ level of thanking your customers and prospects. It’s the “Happy Thanksgiving” post.

Don’t get me wrong, you should absolutely do it, but it is also the most basic thing you can do. Don’t be afraid to get creative. Maybe you could even bake your pie from scratch and come up with an original idea!

Green bean casserole/Mashed potatoes and gravy
These may be considered side dishes, but if done right, can easily outshine even the juiciest turkey or most scrumptious dessert. Execution requires some forethought and effort, but it can still be pulled off in short-order if necessary.

This is the mid-tier thank you to your customers and followers. It’s the interactive Thanksgiving element. Perhaps it’s a coloring page for kids, or a fun game idea the family can play after dinner. Maybe it’s asking people to submit their favorite Thanksgiving story and incentivizing it with a holiday prize. No matter what it is you choose, it’s about engagement.

When done correctly, it associates your brand with fun traditions and family bonding. It generally doesn’t take much effort — a little creative work on the front-end and some promotion on the back-end — but it has the potential to fall on its face. What if no one participates? What if it gets overrun by trolls? These are all possibilities you need to prepare for and have contingencies in place to circumvent these potential pitfalls.

Turkey and stuffing
The main event. What the day is all about. The bird that is cooked to perfection. Crispy skin, juicy meat and savory stuffing. It requires planning and prep work. It isn’t easy, but it is the best way to celebrate the season.

This is the giving back approach. You’ve spent the year receiving business (and hopefully making money) and are about to head into a commercialized Christmas season. It’s the perfect time to give something back.

The easiest way to tackle this is by making a monetary or physical good donation (think donating presents to a needy family or food to a food bank). However, the best and most well-received way to give thanks and give back is through the donation of time. Gather up your work force, take time away from the office and donate it to a good cause (maybe even something related to your business or something your customers are passionate about).

This takes planning and coordination (as well as a willingness to potentially lose a day’s worth of business), but it puts you and your organization in a fantastic light for consumers. Just make sure you have someone there to document the occasion so your customers know what good deeds you are doing.

Pulling off the perfect Thanksgiving is never easy – whether you are hosting family or planning a way to show thanks to your customers. But with a little planning and effort, you can pull off a memorable holiday for all involved.

Need help concocting the perfect Holiday recipe for your business? Let us know in the comments or shoot us an email. We’re happy to help you conquer the kitchen.

At AKC Marketing we honestly assess the perception of your company. We push to market you above your competition. We do this by igniting your inner brand - focusing on what your true value to the marketplace is. To make it impossible to be ignored in your industry.
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