Mastering the Art of Early Holiday Engagement: Gift Guides and Affiliate Linking Strategies

Fall may have just begun, but the holidays are around the corner – which means it's time to secure those gift guide placements. Michelle Songy, founder of Press Hook, shares her tips for pitching and making the most of affiliate opportunities. 

This year's holiday season has burst upon us earlier than ever, igniting the holiday shopping excitement well in advance. Major retailers like Home Depot are already adorning their stores with festive cheer. Even more striking is the significant thirty percent increase in requests from journalists for holiday gift guide submissions at Press Hook. This shift in consumer behavior presents an extraordinary opportunity. The question that looms is, how can brands and PR professionals effectively navigate this evolving landscape?

Leveraging Early Engagement

One pivotal lesson from this early holiday fervor is the pressing need to get ahead of the curve. Economic concerns like inflation have prompted consumers to adopt a "start early, shop wisely" mantra. Consequently, retailers have begun spreading out the holiday shopping season to accommodate this demand. To secure that coveted spot in holiday gift guides, brands, and PR professionals must align their strategies and initiate their pitches early.

At Press Hook, our mission is centered around empowering publicists to make meaningful relationships and secure quality coverage, faster. Our platform acts as a vital link, connecting publicists with the journalist community, fostering early engagement, and ensuring that agencies can effectively navigate the demands of holiday campaigns and stay ahead of the curve.

Embracing the Value-First Approach

This year, consumers have placed a renewed premium on value-oriented spending. As forecasted by Insider Intelligence, mainstream media outlets are poised to prioritize products that offer outstanding value when compiling their holiday shopping recommendations. To position a product as a front-runner, it's crucial to highlight its inherent value proposition. Showcase compelling factors such as "10,000 five-star reviews," available on popular platforms like Amazon, and upcoming promotional or sale dates in your pitches. These intricate details resonate with consumers who aren't just looking for gifts but intelligent investments.

Image is Everything

When it comes to holiday press, captivating products and lifestyle imagery can make all the difference. Ensure you have high-quality visuals ready, especially for gift sets. Embrace seasonal themes that publications are eager to use.

Affiliate Linking: A Necessity in Modern Publishing

In the rapidly evolving realm of publishing, affiliate linking has emerged as a veritable lifeline for publishers grappling with dwindling ad sales and revenue, and affiliate commissions are a critical source of income. Publishers increasingly favor products that actively participate in affiliate programs.

This year, the stakes are even higher for publications, compelled by stringent revenue targets while operating with leaner teams. Consequently, they seek products that excel in sales and boast impressive ratings—driving up their affiliate sales and providing a mutually beneficial partnership.

The trend toward value-oriented spending presents a golden opportunity for both brands and publishers and now is the time to make the most of it.

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