You’ve probably noticed something different at your local coffee shop lately. All of the pumpkin spiced lattes have been replaced with peppermint, and as the snow begins to gracefully dust the city in a blanket of blissful holiday cheer – you can’t help but notice even the best of friends beating each other with eight-irons over the last PS4 at Costco.

Now that the annual gift man is only days away and your annual budgets are toast, you’ve got to pull up your reindeer socks and find a way to extend some holiday greetings. Lucky for you, we are also quite fond of procrastination at times, so we’re sharing with you these great FREE ideas for useful inbound marketing gifts that your business contacts will actually appreciate:

1. Endorse them or leave a recommendation on LinkedIn

Whether it’s a great client, a subcontractor or a company that went the extra mile for you, instead of sending them a card that says “here’s the exact same piece of 16pt cardboard that I mailed to 999 other people”, why not give them something that could actually be useful?

Because there's a price break at 1,000.

Remember the people who helped you achieve your goals during the year and send them a personal recommendation or endorse their skills via LinkedIn. By doing so you’re helping to pinpoint them as an industry expert for others to see. Here’s some instructions on how you can endorse someone’s skills or leave a recommendation on LinkedIn.

2. Share some of their content

Share your contact’s brand messages via social media. Retweets, Facebook shares, Repins, you name it. The initial stage of getting noticed is one of the hardest parts of inbound marketing so they’ll truly appreciate that you not only took time to read their valuable content but that you also value it enough to share with others. Not only does this help extend their audience, but it will also give them a nice SEO boost as well.

3. Do a guest blog

Keeping a regular content schedule filled can be harder than you grandmother’s fruitcake. One way to help feed the inbound monster without having to write everything yourself is to do guest posts. It not only offers a different view on your blog, but it also helps build quality incoming links. You can even do a Christmas swap and get them to return the favour. Everybody wins. Break out the eggnog.

And then break out the Twister.

4. Write a review

Find out where your contacts are active and leave them a positive review. It could be Yelp, Google or even on their own website. Authentic online reviews are a great way to boost credibility, especially for startup businesses. Your positive review can go a long way.

Hey, don’t think you’re just limited to relationships that you’ve already established, either. There’s nothing that says you can’t share some content and write some positive reviews for some of your favourite brands and plant the seed for sprouting new relationships next year. Us procrastinators need to be proactive once in awhile.

This Christmas, save a tree, leave a comment!

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