Small Business Marketing Calendar: Planning for Key Holidays

Our free Small Business Marketing Calendar includes all key dates, big and obscure, to help you plan your 2021 content and promotions.

Have you ever scrolled through Instagram and noticed a national holiday pop-up that you didn’t know existed and wonder how you could include something similar in your marketing plan? That’s why we’ve created a small business marketing calendar that outlines every key date, from Black Friday to National Hamburger Day – no day is too big or too small! For tips and tricks on using the calendar and incorporating it into your marketing plan, keep reading!

  • When to Prepare for Key Holidays
  • How to use the Marketing Calendar
  • What Holidays to Align Your Business With

When to Prepare for Key Holidays

Male and female coffee shop owners smiling at tablet in coffee shop

Planning last minute for any campaign, especially around holidays, can be stressful. Finalize your promotional offer and campaign strategy 1-2 months ahead for smaller holidays and up to 6 months ahead for larger ones. By planning ahead and knowing what’s coming down the pipeline, you can ensure you have enough time to strategize, budget, execute and launch a successful campaign. If something urgent comes up, you’ll have enough time to be flexible and pivot your campaign strategy. 

When planning your campaign, make sure you allocate time to analyze your results and evaluate the success of your campaign. By understanding what the results were and the campaign’s return on investment, you can optimize similar future campaigns accordingly. This should be completed as quickly as possible. 

How to Use a Seasonal Marketing Calendar


Two people leabing over desk pointing to charts and diagrams.

Use our marketing calendar in conjunction with past promotional logs, competitor research and your overall marketing communications plan to ensure you’re capitalizing on any key dates that are relevant to your business. Don’t have a concrete marketing plan? Check out our 30/60/90 day marketing plan to get started planning a few months ahead.  Outline your overall marketing efforts and based on your needs, and integrate key dates and offers into your digital and offline marketing channels. 

Channels to consider when planning promotions:

  • Ad campaigns
  • SEO rich content
  • Direct mail marketing 
  • Traditional displays or signage
  • Email marketing
  • Events
  • Social media campaigns

What Holidays to Align Your Business With

Cheerful florist leaning on counter in her shop looking at laptop with client orders

When planning promotions, it’s important to align with key dates and holidays that make the most sense for your business. While Black Friday might work for some corporations, Small Business Saturday might be a fit for your business. While there are many obscure events to celebrate, like National Hamburger Day, major shopping dates should be prioritized as they already have large companies marketing for them. Start highlighting these dates and based on timing, add smaller dates as they fit in.

Regardless of your industry, all businesses should consider acknowledging these special days:

  • January: New Year’s Day
  • February: Valentine’s Day
  • April: Easter
  • May: Mother’s Day
  • June: Father’s Day
  • July: Canada Day
  • August: Back to School, Civic Day
  • September: Labour Day
  • October: Thanksgiving, Halloween
  • November: Remembrance Day, Black Friday
  • December: Christmas, New Year’s Eve

Some seasons might be slower than others, especially for certain industries, and using holiday promotions will help keep you at top of mind for your customers for when they are ready to make a purchase. 

Remember, your business is unique and needs tailored promotions to fit your business and customers. Our marketing calendar includes key dates across many industries, including restaurant, home improvement, automotive, health & wellness, retail and more. Start planning today to spark creativity and imagination in creating promotions and content that attract and delight customers.

Still have questions about planning your marketing strategy? Contact your local DRMG rep today!


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