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Imagine That, Inc

How Digital Marketing is Like Thanksgiving Dinner

Thanksgiving is only a few days away, and just as your dinner table will have some well-loved staples, digital marketing has its core elements, too. To put you in the Thanksgiving mood, grab a plate and learn how digital marketing relates to your Thanksgiving dinner.

I hesitated before writing this post because of the “cheesiness factor” involved with Thanksgiving puns and analogies, but I ultimately decided that this could be a helpful way for non-marketers to relate to the wonderful and complex world of digital marketing.

As digital marketers, our Turkey Day doesn’t have football games, parades, or relatives who indulged in a little too much apple cider (well, this is up for debate), but we do have the right combination of “dishes” to make a successful digital marketing feast. So here we go!

Thanksgiving dinner is like a digital marketing strategy.


The Thanksgiving Turkey = Your Website

Just as turkey is the centerpiece of all traditional Thanksgiving dinners, your website is the cornerstone of your digital strategy. Like cooking a turkey to perfection, creating a compatible website is the key to a great Thanksgiving/digital marketing plan. Everything that you do online will link back to your website, so you want to make sure that the bird is cooked right, goes well with all of your side dishes, is fresh, is not overcooked or undercooked, and is the appropriate size for the amount of guests you are expecting. This all relates perfectly to your website – make sure your site is done right (well organized & user friendly), goes well with your industry/audience, has fresh content, has an appropriate amount of content and resources, and is just the right size for your potential customers. Make sure your website is as compatible with your other marketing efforts as a turkey is with all of your scrumptious side dishes.

The Stuffing = Your Content Strategy

Stuffing gives your turkey its flavor. The content, language, and tone you use in your website’s content gives your business its own taste. Keep your brand message in mind and tailor your content to your users’ specific tastes.

The Gravy = Your SEO Plan

If you’re like me, you cover just about everything on your plate with gravy. It truly is what makes your turkey mouth-watering, and can even improve the taste if it is a little dry. Building links within your SEO plan acts like gravy by complementing your website and building rank in the search engines. Just like the thumbs up you get from your Thanksgiving guests as they stuff their mouths, backlinks are votes of approval to your website. The more relevant links you get, the more credible your website becomes, and you are rewarded with higher ranking on search engines. Beware, though, as not all links are created equal. So as you trust your gravy to the most accomplished chef in the family, make sure you have a seasoned professional handling your link building efforts.

The Mashed Potatoes = Your Mobile Site Optimization

Everyone loves mashed potatoes, just like anyone searching the Internet on a mobile device loves a mobile website. Simplicity is what keeps mashed potatoes a Thanksgiving staple, and a mobile-friendly website makes surfing on a mobile phone much simpler than having to pinch and grab. Gravy pairs well with mashed potatoes as well, just as mobile sites pair well with SEO. In fact, last week Google announced that they are starting to give ranking preference to sites that have a mobile presence.

The sides of your digital marketing strategy.


Cranberry Sauce = Your Blog Posts

Cranberry sauce is a side dish with power. Just as this multidimensional, tart, and colorful sauce interests your palette, blogging adds depth to your business by sharing news, making your business personable, and establishing yourself as an authority in your industry. I typically don’t mix my gravy and cranberry sauce, but blogging can definitely help your SEO by keeping your website’s content fresh and unique, as well as adding more indexable pages for the search engines to crawl.

Bread = Your Email Marketing

Just about every Thanksgiving table will have a unique type of bread. Email marketing is like your bread because it comes in many different forms. Email campaigns can be anything from a coupon to a recurring newsletter, but be careful that you don’t have too bread items or your guests will inevitably be overwhelmed. Timeliness is another factor to consider – the content of email is typically time-sensitive, so be sure to prepare your emails ahead of time and serve your bread fresh.

Sweet Potatoes – Your Search Engine Marketing (SEM) Campaigns

Sweet potatoes balance well with your main course, just as pairing SEM with your other digital marketing activities compliments your business’ brand online through words and visuals. It’s a sweet and savory combination. For new websites that may not be ranking high in organic searches, SEM is a way to put your website in front of targeted users and increase traffic to your site.

The desserts and drinks of digital marketing are social media and leads


Pie = Your Social Media

Can you imagine a Thanksgiving without dessert? More than anything else on the table, dessert is meant to be shared with others and get the conversation going. Social media is all about the conversation – don’t just exist on your social profiles – share and engage with your audience. Your guests would throw a fit and you would be left with a very lonely table if you didn’t have dessert, and the same is true with having an online presence, but no connection to social media. Sharing and engaging in social media is a must for promoting your business online, but use only the appropriate sites for your industry or else you might get indigestion.

Drinks = Your Leads

Drinks are best when served continuously throughout the Thanksgiving meal. Leads are no exception. Follow your leads wisely and don’t accept every glass offered to you.

Moderation = Success

With this combination of Thanksgiving staples, you’re sure to be full of digital marketing by the end of the day. But, moderation might just be the key. There comes a time in every Thanksgiving meal where you reach your belly’s maximum, and the same can be said of digital marketing. There are so many rules, guides, and tips involved in a performing a good digital marketing campaign, but take a deep breath, loosen the belt a little, sit back, relax, and everything will be fine. If you’ve followed the digital marketing Thanksgiving recipe outlined above, you can take some time to enjoy the fruits of your labor just like a well-prepared Thanksgiving meal will allow some time this holiday season with family and friends.

Here’s to wishing you and yours a wonderful and happy Thanksgiving!