How to Make the Most of Your Instagram Holiday Content Strategy: 5 Tips for Brands

Oh, the holidays. A time of joy and merriment for most, but also a time of stress and anxiety for social media marketers. So much to plan! So little time!

This is your lucky day: we're about to make you an Instagram hero by helping you maximize your promotional efforts over the course of this festive time of year. Below you'll find 5 holiday-specific tips for devising an optimized Instagram holiday content strategy, as well as measuring its return.

Ho ho ho! 🎁


@madewell is all over their holiday Instagram content strategy. Question is: are they tracking the results?


If you're a brand marketing on the 'Gram, the weeks between Thanksgiving and New Year's Eve might be more of a source of emotional distress than festive yuletide cheer. So much is expected of content around the holidays, and we know firsthand that the mere thought of having to keep up with everything is enough to be overwhelming.

Prepping for this busy season is no small feat, but it can be achieved seamlessly with the right tools. Being able to plan ahead and have the ability to measure the performance of your content strategy is vital to calculating success, as well as to the implementation future Instagram game plans. And that goes for whether you've created a festive campaign, or are just sprinkling some jolly seasonal fairy dust atop your regular programming.

Apply the 5 invaluable pointers below to make the most of your thematic content as the year draws to a conclusion. Learn how to plan for optimization and how to best utilize Dash Hudson's tools suite to take your efforts to the next level.

You'll thank yourself for it.

Tip #1: Holiday Campaigns

Whether you've already created your own custom activation or are drawing inspiration from other accounts, zoning in on this year’s big holiday Insta content trends is key to honing in on what performs above average. Aka, the types of posts you'll want to be pushing out.

  • The DH way:

There's a fail-proof way within the Dash Hudson platform to determine the most successful content that's being published to Instagram. Head to User Search once you've logged into your account, and add the handles of any public user to view their content. From there, select the holiday posts that you'd like to analyze, and click save to a Board. 🔎

Now to measure the performance of this holiday content, head to the Boards tab for the deep dig. From here, you'll be able to identify content trends based on both engagement and reach, meaning you'll be better equipped to deliver what Instagram users want. Easy peasy. 🌅🌠🎆

The perfect pairing of the MAST Collection + @graceandthorn greens. Now on view at @townhallhotel

A photo posted by Mast Brothers (@mastbrothers) on

Ummm, chocolate Christmas tree? Where do we sign?


Tip #2: Sourcing Content

With the holiday season in full swing, having content ready to go is 🔑. Lest you be creating enough content to provide for weeks worth of merriness, you're going to have to use your curating abilities to source high quality filler content that fits your feed.

  • The DH way:

There are a few ways to go about this within our platform:

  1. Head over UGC > Timeline once you've logged into your account. Use this visual feature to quickly identify the most influential content in which you’ve been tagged or @ mentioned. From there, identify the posts that best match the aesthetic of your feed to repurpose. 📷

  2. Head over to UGC > Location Monitor once you've logged in, and find the best content from any geo-tagged location in the world, from winter wonderlands to festive events. After you’ve added a spot, all of its associated content will populate in order of reach, yours for the #regram. 🌎

  3. Head over to User Search to look for content to which you have no association, and source posts from any public Instagram account. Just don't forget to credit the source when repurposing - they'll most likely be honored to have been featured by you. 🔎

Happy discovery! ✨

Tip #3: Scheduling Content

Now that you’ve sourced your content, it’s time to get those festive posts scheduled! Preparing a comprehensive content calendar during busy periods can help alleviate a lot of stress, make your life easier and ensure that all your bases are covered.

  • The DH way:

Our Scheduler allows brands the ability to not only schedule content, but to see their optimized post times and preview their feed in advance. We know, oh la la.

Here’s how:

First things first, ensure that you’ve downloaded our app, Dash Hudson for Brands. Once that's done, there are many ways to go about scheduling your content for a robust optimized strategy. Select Add New Post in the Scheduler tab on desktop, or the blue + sign in the mobile app to upload an image. Either leave the date and time blank for the image to go into your bank of unscheduled content, or select a specific time for it to go directly onto the calendar.

If you're on desktop, optimize your posts by matching them to the blue blocks on your calendar. The darker the blue, the higher your historical engagement rate when posting at these times. Drag and drop your uploaded images to the blue areas. ⌚️

Once your posts have been scheduled, select Feed Preview under the Scheduled tab to take a gander at your gallery's aesthetic as a whole. If you're not pleased with it, you can make any adjustments by dragging the scheduled content around, either under the Scheduled tab or on the calendar itself. 😍

Now get scheduled and get going. There are holiday parties to attend! 🍸

Hello cross-account promotions!


Tip #4: Tracking Conversions

You guys, m-commerce is on the rise, in case you haven't heard. So if you haven’t set up your account for shopping, especially for the holiday season, now’s the time!

  • The DH way:

Our LikeShop tool enables brands to add links retroactively to any published post, or better yet, to any scheduled images before they go live. To activate this functionality, head to the LikeShop tab once you've signed into your account, and paste the custom URL into your Insta bio.

To attribute links to your scheduled posts, head to the Scheduler and click into the posts you want to make shoppable. Once your caption's been written, click next to be taken to the link window and paste whatever web destination you'd like your followers redirected to from your account. Don't forget to use a CTA in your posts!

But did you know that we can also help you track all of those conversions? Again: oh la la.

  1. Once you've added links to posts to optimize your LikeShop, log into your Google Analytics and head to Google Analytics > Reporting > Acquisition > Campaigns > All Campaigns. This is where you’ll see likeshopme, which houses all the info on your LikeShop traffic. Magic. ✨

  2. Still within Google Analytics, head to Admin > View > Goals > New Goal and select what you'd like to track. We recommend selecting Checkout Complete under Revenue. Cha ching. 💳

  3. All's you need to do now is name your goal and select how you'd like to track your conversion. We recommend selecting Destination under Type. Add in your "purchase complete"/"thank you for shopping with us" page URL and hit save. 🎁

If you haven't set up your LikeShop yet and need some assistance, let us know - we’d be happy to get you going.

Tip #5: Analyzing Holiday Content and Campaigns

It's time to monitor the performance of your holiday posts to learn not only about the returns of your marketing efforts, but also which trends are doing best. Aka two 🔑🔑s to continue driving engagement rates and building a strong following throughout the cheerful season 🎄.

  • The DH way:

Organic reach and UGC levels peak during the holidays. Whether users are tagging gifts, places or spaces, Here's how you can keep track of all the impressions those tags are getting you:

  1. Hashtag Monitor / Location Monitor: Track the reach of content featuring any hashtag or geo-tagged location to assess the performance any UGC you haven't been tagged in, or more specifically, of campaigns and events.

  2. Boards: Monitor the performance of your or any public content by selecting any post and saving it to a Board. Once it's been added, arrange your boards in order of engagement or reach to let them give you direction on how to adjust your stategy.

  3. Relationship IQ: If a gifting program or influencer campaigns are part of your holiday strategy, then this is a must. Monitor specific users for content in which they tag or @ mention you. It measures each of those posts' engagement rates, reach and how many followers they’ve converted to your account.

Stick to these pointers and watch your Instagram content strategy take a turn for the optimized!


This blog post was written in collaboration with Jenny Pratt.

'Tis the season!


Got a question about Instagram holiday content strategies or need additional info? Don't be shy! Before you leave us, sign up below to get our blog in your inbox. Our delicious treats land once a week.