The Marketing Strategy Hiding in Your Favorite Christmas Songs

Andrew Schmid

Is there a correlation between a marketer’s favorite Christmas song and their preferred marketing strategy? We decided to find out and ran a large national survey asking marketing executives about their favorite songs/strategies. The results may surprise you! Here are some examples of clear correlations between song and strategy.

Jingle Bells 

Easily one of the most repetitive songs of the entire Christmas season, “Jingle Bells” uses few words to get its point across. The keywords of this song are obviously “jingle” and “bells.” What marketing strategy relies on keywords? SEO and keyword marketing, of course! The connection is so simple just like the lyrics of the song! Fans of “Jingle Bells” and search engine optimization know the power of finding a few good words and how to make the most out of them.

All I Want for Christmas is You

This song is specific in its wants: you. That’s all Mariah Carey wants for Christmas. The song feels personally tailored to a very precise individual. That personal touch based on known demographics like geolocation, age, gender, buying interests, political beliefs and whatever other scary things Facebook knows about their users is aligned perfectly with a lookalike audience targeting campaign on the social media platform(s) of their choice. Fans of this song/strategy know the power of clearly identifying their target audience and are willing to reach out directly to that group. 

Last Christmas

We all know the feeling, you get some attention from a special someone, you invest some time in them… only to have them leave you and move on. We could be talking about a romantic interest or a sales interest who visits your site, clicks around a bit and then leaves without buying anything. “Last Christmas” is the song favored by all bitter exes every December just like retargeting ads are perfect for those trying to recapture the attention of a past site visitor. Just look at these lyrics:

“Once bitten and twice shy
I keep my distance
But you still catch my eye
Tell me, baby
Do you recognize me?
Well, it’s been a year”

The lines “do you recognize me/well, it’s been a year” match perfectly with some of the retargeting ads/emails marketers will seed the internet with hoping to rekindle an old flame. Unlike with issues of the heart, remarketers truly do believe in never moving on.

Baby, It’s Cold Outside

Put that coffee down and repeat after me: smile & dial. “Baby, It’s Cold Outside” is all about the persistence (a creepy persistence) of a man trying to have his date spend the night. She has excuses as to why she cannot stay and he just serves up rebuttal after rebuttal. Sound familiar? To us, it sounds like old-fashioned direct selling via a rolodex, a phone and an arsenal of rebuttals while a sales manager listens over your shoulder. Cold calling has been labeled an archaic marketing method and considering this song was written in 1949, the match between this song and strategy only grows stronger. In recent years, the song’s lyrics have aroused controversy and with over 200 million Americans joining a federal do not call list, it might be time to put both the song and this strategy out in the cold. Fans of this song are probably really excited to hear about extending their car’s warranty with a stranger.

The Twelve Days of Christmas

Inbound marketing aficionados believe that the key to attracting customer eyeballs is by providing copious amounts of valuable content. This strategy has a devoted following who believe it brings people into a sales funnel and turns prospects into customers. These inbound marketing lovers are the same people who love “The Twelve Days of Christmas,” because the song provides tons of content. Just look at all the valuable content in the lyrics:

“… twelve drummers drumming, eleven pipers piping, ten lords a-leaping, nine ladies dancing, eight maids a-milking, seven swans a-swimming, six geese a-laying, five golden rings, four calling birds, three french hens, two turtle doves…”

Now of course, any true inbound marketing evangelical knows to make all these drummers, pipers, lords, and more a gated asset. Sure, all visitors get to see the partridge in a pear tree as a teaser but if potential customers want to see what comes next (doves & french hens), they’re going to have to enter their email, first name, and last name just to start. 

For those inbound fanatics who are looking for an inbound marketing-themed Christmas song that matches their favorite carol and espouses the assets needed for a great inbound marketing campaign, we tasked our copywriters to whip something up. So, here are the lyrics to “The Five Assets of Inbound Marketing.” For brevity sake, we will only include the final verse:

“By the last day of the campaign,
their marketing had prepared for me:
48 topical blog posts,
12 email newsletters,
six traffic generation emails,
two responsive landing pages,
and one post-conversion thank-you page.”

If you want the full song, we’re going to need your email address.

OK, so obviously this is a joke but we hope you enjoyed it as a nice reprieve from the constant Christmas songs and marketing strategy buzzwords floating around the air this time of year in your (home) office and in Zoom meetings.

Seriously though, all of us at Saltwater wish you a safe, healthy and festive holiday season.


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