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A common complaint around this time of year is how soon holiday decorations go up. Comments pointed towards companies deemed over-anxious for holiday joy in the form of revenues.

Is there a parallel to this in social media? Or is social media an area where brands are more cautious due to the potential for any marketers nightmare. Viral backlash.

So we thought it would a useful benchmark to note the posting volume for holiday-themed content so far this year. So let’s take a look at the Facebook posting activities of 45 large companies for this November, as of Monday the 21st. The 45 companies are in 5 different industries. Snack foods, luxury fashion, tourism, consumer electronics, and hospitals.

The table below shows summary data for each industry. The number of brands in the industry, and the total posting from all brands in the industry.

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For each industry, we’ll look at the number of posts using the term holiday or holidays, what days those were posted and by which brands, what the key themes of those posts were, and show the top brand and fan posts in each industry (based on engagement-fans ratio on the day of the post).

Snack Foods

The snack food industry group includes 7 brands. Butterfinger, Oreo, Reese’s, Skittles, Snickers, Starburst and Twix.

In the Campaign Analyzer view below, the first thing to notice is only 4 posts. With only 3 brands posting about the holidays so far in November. Lower than I might have guessed, although not many people are shopping snack foods for holiday gifts.

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Looking at the top brand and fan posts at the bottom, the most impacting fan post was actually from a partner brand. A strategy we’ve been highlighting in our industry analysis as solid way for brands to expand their social media impact beyond their own fan base.

The word cloud shows content about planning holiday parties, which the top post offers a nice solution for.

Luxury Fashion

The 10 brands in this industry include Armani, Burberry, Calvin Klein, Chanel, Dior, Dolce & Gabanna, Gucci, Louis Vuitton, Marc Jacobs and Versace.

Per the Facebook Campaign Analyzer report, below, we can see a little higher posting volume than the snack food brands, with 8. That certainly makes sense. These brands aren’t cheap, and someone putting one of these items on their list wants to give the notified plenty of time to start saving their money.

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We see that 60%, or 6 of the 10 brands participated in posting, with two of the brands just getting into the action this week. The top performing post is, of course, a gift shopping suggestion.

Tourism

The tourism industry group is comprised of the state tourism offices for 8 US states. Georgia, Hawaii, New York, Michigan, Texas, Colorado, California and Florida.

Compared to the two previous industry groups, the state tourism office’s total of 10 is the highest yet. However, given how early people start making holiday plans, I’m surprised this total isn’t much higher. It also only includes 50% of the DMOs.

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The Top Related Terms chart shows the leading topics for these posts. Planning registers strongly, which makes sense for an experience involving travel. The top post from Georgia is nice. Giving residents suggestions on decorating their homes for the holidays.

Consumer Electronics

The 11 brands in this category — Samsung, Bose, Canon, GoPro, HP, Nokia, Panasonic, Philips, Pioneer, Sony and Visio — they don’t seem overly concerned about the holidays, with only 4 posts. And, only 2 of the brands participating. Maybe high end electronics are more of a last minute decision.

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Here again, the top post features a gift idea.

Hospitals

The last category is hospitals, and specifically children’s hospitals. There are 9 of them, including Akron’s Children’s Hospital, Boston Children’s Hospital, Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh, Cook Children’s Hospital, Dayton Children’s Hospital, Nationwide Children’s Hospital, St Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital, and UH Rainbow Babies and Children’s Hospital.

Interestingly, this group has the highest posting volume, and also the largest number of brands participating, with 8.

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The top brand post is one with a lot of dimension to it. It incorporates a donation, serving as a good reminder of charitable contributions during the holiday season. It also makes the story very human, featuring a local businessman who’s an active and likely influential supporter of the organization.

Summary

Going into this, I thought we’d be seeing much higher posting volume, with brands eager to get a jump on the holiday commercial push. However, it could be brand’s showing restraint on social media due to potential backlash.

For brands that are posting, the themes are pleasant and uplifting, as expected. The top themes include messages for gift ideas, helpful holiday tips, and reminders that the holiday season is a time of giving.