As a social media manager you pick up all sorts of random facts about national holidays, events and awareness dates. It can be hard to know which you should incorporate into your social media content plan for brand channels.

The most well known, love or hate it, is arguably Blue Monday… conceived by fellow PR folk some years ago to mark the most depressing day of the year.

But some of my personal favourites include:

  • National Pizza Day (9th February)
  • National Stationery Week (22nd April)
  • National Bubblewrap Appreciation Day (3rd May)
  • National Name Your Car Day (17th October)
  • International Talk Like A Pirate Day (19th September)

Whaaaat? You mean you don’t celebrate these days? Just me then…

via GIPHY

In all seriousness for a second, there are some very strange days and many of them are just a bit of fun. But it can leave you scratching your head trying to work out which you should – or could – leverage across social media.

Should we have an opinion on this? Are we expected to comment and mark every national holiday, event and date?

Here are our top tips on choosing the right moments to mark in your social media calendar:

  1. Know what your audience cares about: if your online community, customer base (current or future!) cares, maybe you should too. Maybe they might even expect you to have an opinion or point of view, depending on the brand. Understanding an audience’s passions and interests can help you identify new avenues for content, partnership opportunities and ideas for social media.
  2. Make sure it fits with your brand – your second step is to consider how this aligns with your brand. View it through the lens of your overarching brand strategy and personality.. Does it complement or jar with your brand purpose? Consider how it will support your social media objectives and how you want the brand to be perceived. 

Innocent leverage unusual dates like ‘Penguin Awareness Day’ to match their quirky brand and showcase some of the more unusual dates in the diary to entertain and delight their audience:

Source: Innocent Twitter

  1. Consider how you can add value – what can we say or add to the conversation to make this benefit our audience? What might the purpose of our content be… is it simply to raise a smile, to entertain? Or could we use it to educate? Inspire? How do we make what we have to say make a splash on social and, if we’re smart, in PR too?
  2. How do we make it unique? If you strip away the handle and take off the logo, could your content belong to anyone? Think about how to make it distinctive and something no-one could possibly imitate in your competitor set.
  3. The last one is tough – ask yourself whether the event and content idea will take you away from doing something else. Is the benefit of reacting to this event worth it? As ever, be clear on the objective and return you expect to see from your investment (be that time, money on an agency or media spend). Pick the ‘right’ events or awareness dates. Learn from your results. Improve on them.

Tools like Buzzsumo can also help you rank which events are most talked about… so you could decide to consciously choose the most popular dates or make more of those under represented.

In a future post we’ll look at other global events and topics brands might consider posting about in social media. From big social issues to the death of public figures in society. A cautionary note before then: stop. Think it through. And think it through again. 


Want to know how your social media could be doing more for you? Speak to our social media experts and see how they could turn Twitter likes into brand love.

Sally Rushton

About Sally Rushton