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The Ultimate Marketing Kit for Thanksgiving in 2021

If the upcoming Thanksgiving makes you feel anything but grateful, you’ve come to the right place, fellow marketer! We know that planning marketing campaigns from scratch can be time-consuming. That’s why we’ve created a complete Holiday Marketing Kit that you can get for free. From awesome Instagram story background designs to all the popular #hashtags you need, we got your back. This article contains all the resources we’ve gathered in our Thanksgiving Marketing Kit. It’s our way of saying “Thank you!” to our readers. 
We’ll start with the basics: infographics with the best time to post, best channels & formats, ideal campaign start for each holiday, image sizes, and the most relevant topics. Let’s get started.

The basics. When, where, how, what to post

Best times and days to post on social media

These times are in Eastern Standard Time (EST). You’ll need to convert them to the timezone of your audience.

Best times to post for holidaysWhen to start talking about the upcoming holidays

While planning can start 3-6 months in advance, the moment you begin communicating with your audience is pretty standard.

when to start talking about the holidaysFrequency of the holiday-related posts

Best post frequencyBest social media channels by users

More than half the people on Earth use social media and that number is still growing daily. This means your audience is probably out there. All you have to do is publish your holiday campaigns, engage, and make that sale.

Top social media platforms to use for the holidaysImage size guide for your social media posts

No need to remind you about the importance of visual assets in your campaign, right? Instead, here’s everything you need to know in terms of image sizes for all main social media platforms. This leaves you more time to focus on creating amazing Thanksgiving social media posts.

Facebook image size guideInstagram image size guide

Linkedin image size guideTikTok photo and video size

YouTube image size guideTwitter image size guide

Best topics for your Halloween campaign

If you’re in need of some inspiration for your Thanksgiving marketing campaigns, check out this collection of topics to get your creative juices flowing.

Thanksgiving topics for marketing campaigns

Merry tools for productive marketing teams

Next, you’ll find a list of hand-picked tools that will make marketers’ lives easier when planning the holiday campaigns. 

Best social media tools


Planable helps agencies & in-house marketing teams collaborate to create, approve, and publish social media content faster. With Planable, marketers have an all-in-one platform that streamlines content creation & approval. So no more misunderstandings or wasted time.
Pricing: starts at $33/month billed annually (free plan available)


Kicksta promises pure organic growth powered by a cutting edge Artificial Intelligence technology for your Instagram accounts. They also have a hashtag generator tool which is very simple and includes a search box where you can enter a keyword or topic. Then the tool will generate a list of hashtags related to that topic.
Pricing: starts at $49/user/month


Podium is redefining the way customers interact with local businesses. From collecting reviews on the sites that matter most, textenabling your website with Webchat, collecting payment via text, gathering private feedback to managing all your customer messages from one central dashboard with Inbox, Podium is the answer.
Pricing: Available upon request


BuzzSumo analyzes hundreds of millions of pieces of content, making comprehensive and robust data accessible to businesses of all sizes. It provides insight into what content is working, why, and which influencers can amplify it.
Pricing: starts at $79/month billed annually 


Mention is a social media marketing suite that helps brands and agencies drive the conversation. Monitor what’s being said online about your brand or product, get analytics on your industry and measure the impact of your marketing & PR activities.
Pricing: starts at $25/month (free plan available) 


Place.Me puts brands and agencies directly in touch with communities of pre-qualified and engaged talent. They are your IR35 solution and pay their freelancers weekly. For more information contact them at [email protected]

Best design tools


Personizely is a conversion marketing toolkit used to make the most of every website visitor. Create high-converting pop-ups, bars, and callouts. You can easily edit your website according to visitor’s activity history, source, geolocation, device, store activity, and many more, creating variations of your website.
Pricing: starts at $23/month billed annually


Venngage empowers you to easily create infographics, presentations, social media posts, and other visual designs with thousands of customizable templates, charts, icons, and design elements.
Pricing: starts at $39/month billed yearly (free plan available)

Designmodo Postcards

Designmodo offers best-designed tools to create well-coded websites and beautiful email newsletters. Using this awesome tool, you can create different types of content: promotional, E-Commerce, news, transactional, and more.
Pricing: starts at $15/month billed annually (free plan available)


Canva empowers users to create social media graphics, presentations, posters, and other visual content. Featuring a simple drag-and-drop user interface and a vast library of templates and design ingredients, anyone can take an idea and create something beautiful.
Pricing: starts at $9.95/month billed yearly (free plan available)


Lucidpress is a design & brand templating platform that empowers non-designers in your company to create and distribute marketing collateral all on their own (without going off-brand). Lockable templates protect your brand while allowing colleagues to make small design tweaks and customizations, easing the workload off your creative team.
Pricing: starts at $10/user/month (free plan available)

Best task management tools


Paymo is a work management tool that connects teams looking to manage tasks, schedule team workloads, track worked hours, and bill clients from a single platform. Keep your team aligned and engaged.
Pricing: starts at $8.95/user/month


Todoist is a to-do list app that can help anyone get organized, no matter where they are or what device they use. From planning large scale projects to simply remembering to pay the rent, Todoist can be really helpful.
Pricing: starts at $3/month billed annually (free plan available)


Asana helps teams orchestrate their work, from daily tasks to strategic initiatives. With Asana, teams are more confident, move faster, and accomplish more with less, no matter where they are located. Teams do great things when everyone has clarity and is empowered to do their part. 
Pricing: starts at €10.99/user/month billed annually (free plan available)


Description: Trello helps teams work more collaboratively and get more done. Trello’s boards, lists, and cards enable teams to organize and prioritize projects in a fun and flexible way. Whether it’s for work, a side project or even your next family  vacation, Trello helps you stay organized.
Pricing: starts at $9.99/user/month billed annually (free plan available)


Notion is the all-in-one workspace for notes, project management, documents, and collaboration. Tens of thousands of teams and companies around the world use it to keep their employees informed and working together in one place.
Pricing: starts at $4/month billed annually (free plan available)

Best analytics tools


Socialinsider is a social media competitive benchmarking, analytics, and reporting tool. They support all major social media networks: Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Linkedin, YouTube, and TikTok. With Socialinsider you can impress clients with data they haven’t seen before by comparing their efforts with the efforts of their competitors.
Pricing: starts at $83/month billed annually


Brand24 is a simple yet reliable social media monitoring solution. Brand24 empowers its users to stay updated on what’s being said about their businesses online, get customer insights, engage communities, identify sales leads, improve social customer service, reach out to influencers, and monitor their competition.
Pricing: starts at $49/month billed annually (free plan available)


Awario is a social media & web monitoring tool that will help you track brand mentions, monitor competitors, find sales opportunities and influencers, and engage with your audience online.
Pricing: starts at $24/month billed annually 


Cyfe is all about data. This social media management app helps you keep and analyze all of your business data in one single place. From social media to finance and SEO, all your data will find meaning with Cyfe. 
Pricing: starts at $26.06/month billed annually (free plan available)

Social Blade

Social Blade tracks user statistics for YouTube, Twitch, Instagram, and Twitter. Social Blade gives all users access to their public database which, using advanced technology, is able to provide you with global analytics for any content creator, live streamer, or brand.
Pricing: starts at $3.34/month billed annually

Social media activation ideas

Now let’s take a look at some fresh social media ideas to drive engagement and make new users fall in love with your brand. 

Instagram question: what are you thankful for?

From fear to hope to rage to faith, people are on an emotional rollercoaster all the time. So what if they stopped for a minute and saw the good side of this year?
Use the Instagram question to ask your audience what they’re thankful for this year. Then share their answers in stories. With some cute Instagram story templates, you can easily put your audience into the spotlight.
P.S.: Don’t forget to mention you’re thankful for your awesome audience. Because they really are awesome, aren’t they?

Inappropriate things said at Thanksgiving

We all have that uncle. Or that cousin. And sometimes, we ourselves are the ones to put the foot in the mouth. So why not laugh about it?
Ask your community to share their stories. What inappropriate things have been said over Thanksgiving dinner? We’re sure you’ll find some patterns here. This campaign works for almost every social media platform your company uses. 
Warning: some stories are not appropriate for social media, so when you try this type of activation, make sure you have a form to censor them.

Best recipe secret

Unlike Coca-Cola, mothers and grandmothers are always kind enough to share their recipe secrets hoping that somebody will take the tradition further. 
So here’s an activation idea: ask your users to share their family recipe secrets with you. If you can share a secret of yours, that would be a great incentive to get the conversation going.
As always, any user-generated content can be reshared and used as part of this year’s Thanksgiving campaign.

Thank you gift

What about boosting your sales with an attractive Thanksgiving campaign?
This year, prepare to offer a holiday-related gift to anyone who is making a purchase on your website.
Thank you cards are a thoughtful and inexpensive way to show your customers that you appreciate their business. It doesn’t have to be much. A thank you sign for the Thanksgiving table, or a Christmas decoration for the upcoming holiday. In the end, it costs you so little to say “thank you” to the people who are helping your business grow. And who isn’t thankful for customers? So why not show it?

Share your Thanksgiving dinner table

Photo sharing again. What’s more rewarding than sharing what you’ve been working on? The dinner table deserves internet appreciation. Create a campaign around this topic and encourage your public to share their dinner table with you.
The extra mile: make a contest out of it. They share their photos, their friends vote for it, and the most voted photo wins the prize. There are many Thanksgiving contest ideas you can think of. Be creative. People will appreciate it.

Examples of successful social media campaigns

We’ve also curated a collection of brilliant Thanksgiving advertising campaigns from various brands to draw last-minute inspiration from. Thanksgiving advertisements can be a great way to make consumers think of your brand next time they’re out shopping, so let’s make sure they’re memorable.

Coca-Cola. Share a Coke

Coca-Cola Thanksgiving campaign
We all know about Coca-Cola’s “Share a Coke” campaign. Its success inspired the brand to come up with a Thanksgiving-inspired version. Since everyone’s having dinner with friends and family on this holiday, why not use the personalized bottles as drinkable place cards around the dinner table? The Coca-Cola campaign quickly became the topic of conversation on social media.

Stove Top. The Artisanal Hipster Pilgrim 

Stove Top Thanksgiving campaign featuring The Artisanal Hipster PilgrimOf course Stove Top wanted stuffing to be enjoyed for an entire season between Thanksgiving and Christmas. What brand doesn’t want their product to be sold for a longer period of time? This is the premise behind “stuffing season”. The idea that eating stuffing only on Thanksgiving is so mainstream and coming up with a hipster character to rebel against it is brilliant. The campaign featuring the Artisanal Hipster Pilgrim surely made a lot of people laugh… and eat Stove Top all Stuffing Season long.

HotelTonight. Visit, don’t stay

Hotel Tonight Thanksgiving campaignHotelTonight knows that we all have something in common: those crazy family holiday stories. That’s how the idea for the “visit, don’t stay” campaign was born. The hilarious ads encourage people to book a hotel over the holidays when they go home to visit family. It’s best for everyone. The main takeaway? Relatable content is memorable content.

Postmate. Friendsgiving on-demand

Postmate Thanksgiving campaignThis food, drinks, and grocery delivery/pick-up app planned a successful “Friendsgiving on-demand” campaign. It featured a list of delicious Thanksgiving holiday recipes put together by moms. Yes, moms. Of course, each ingredient found in these various mouthwatering recipes could be purchased through the app. A simple yet effective campaign any brand can implement.

American Express. Small Business Saturday

American Express Thanksgiving campaignThis campaign is not directly tied to gratitude, close family members, or turkeys. It’s not exactly a Black Friday campaign either. American Express created Small Business Saturday to encourage consumers to shop locally for the holidays. Taking place on the Saturday after Thanksgiving, it’s designed to turn the focus on small, brick-and-mortar stores. Being a way to give back to your community, we decided to include it in the Thanksgiving section. It quickly became more than just a campaign – it became a movement. You can check out their Instagram account for inspiration. Created in 2010, this seasonal campaign continues to thrive.

Instagram story background designs

So you know when to post, you have the tools, you’ve chosen your favorite Thanksgiving ad and got inspired. Now it’s time for some holiday-themed backgrounds for Instagram stories that any marketer can personalize. Enjoy!

Thanksgiving Instagram Story Design 1

Thanksgiving Instagram Story Design 2

Thanksgiving Instagram Story Design 3

Thanksgiving Instagram Story Design 4

Visuals to the rescue

You also need high quality images to impress users. That’s why we prepared a curated Unsplash collection containing 30 drop-dead gorgeous images that go well with any Thanksgiving marketing slogans you can imagine.

Thanksgiving Unsplash Collection

Post templates

Thanksgiving posts should be planned ahead of time. No doubt about that. Get into the holiday spirit by customizing your own posts using Planable.

Thanksgiving post template 1

Thanksgiving post template 2

Thanksgiving post template 3

Thanksgiving post template 4Thanksgiving post template 5


Have you tried adding #tbt or #picoftheday to your posts but the only engagement you got was the awkward sound of crickets chirping? Don’t worry. We’ve all been there. 
Hashtags are still a great way to connect your social media content to a specific conversation topic. Since Chris Messina first came up with the idea back in 2007, the popularity of hashtags has skyrocketed. Whether you’re considering adding them to a simple Tweet or incorporate them in a Halloween advertisement, all you need to do is use them the right way and find the best hashtags for your brand.

Chris Messina tweet

Hashtag basics

# Yes, they start with # but please, please don’t use spaces, punctuation or symbols between the words and still hope for the best. Keep the words #together and you’ll see results.
# Although it’s tempting, make sure not to string too many words together. #otherwiseyoullendupwithsomethinglikethis. Short & simple, folks! 
# Are your accounts public? If not, this may be the darn reason no one discovers your awesome content. So make that account public and give a warm welcome to those new followers!
# You may feel like #Christmas or #BlackFriday are too broad but #krampusnight2020 or other obscure hashtags won’t do you a favour either. So maybe save the half-goat, half-demon Krampus stories for the description. If your team approves the post.
# Less is more. Using ALL the hashtags you can think of just looks spammy. Choose a few and save the rest for later posts.

Why use hashtags?

#visibility #engagement #support just to name a few.

Most popular & relevant Twitter hashtags related to Thankgiving

Thanksgiving hashtags for Twitter

Most popular & relevant Instagram hashtags related to Halloween

Thanksgiving hashtags for Instagram

Dos and don’ts

‘Tis the season to be creative and give your audience a reason to talk about your brand. Here are some dos and don’ts to keep in mind when you start working on those amazing Halloween marketing ideas. 

Things you should do

Be mindful of your audience’s preferences

Do you worry about the backlash that a holiday-specific phrase can bring? Are you having nightmares about that joke you scheduled for Thanksgiving? Stop right there. Take a closer look at your audience. Where are your customers from? What kind of content do they share? How about their age? Role? Pain points? No more guessing. Do your research and give your audience what they want, not what you think they might like. Data never lies. 

Engage, engage, engage

The holidays are all about sharing. Sharing presents, meals, special moments, and sometimes sharing too much information at family gatherings. This is a huge opportunity for you to engage with your audience. Ask them to tag a friend, share their photo using your hashtag, or share your content with their friends and family. Ask them questions, create polls, initiate conversations, do AMAs. Sky’s the limit. 

Say “Thank you!”

Now that we talked about asking for things, let’s take a moment to express gratitude. Thank your customers, your followers, and your team. It can be anything from a simple “Thank you!” to a more creative way of showing how much you appreciate them. For instance, Avon created a customer appreciation week, offering its clients a new deal every day of that week. It doesn’t have to be around Thanksgiving. Think about it. People are going to receive tons of special offers & coupons that day. Surprise your customers. Pick a random day. Make them feel special. After all, your brand is alive and kicking thanks to everyone supporting it. 

Use multiple channels in a consistent way

Get in front of as many eyes as possible. Not everyone’s on Instagram. Some prefer Youtube. Or good old email. Make sure your holiday marketing plan isn’t limited to one channel. Also keep in mind that your message should be consistent across each channel and be true to your brand. Your Black Friday campaign doesn’t have to focus on discounts or sound salesy. It can be quirky and funny if your brand’s that way. Think about Cards Against Humanity and its long history of pulling Black Friday stunts. In 2013, it actually raised the price of its game and people still bought it like crazy. 

Set smart goals and track ROI

This is something we should all do. At all times. We know it. You know it. Everybody knows it. And yet… a friendly reminder is a friend indeed. Or something along those lines. Here’s the deal. It’s easy to get lost in execution and lose sight of the bigger picture. So before you go into overdrive, set SMART goals: Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, and Timely. It will make your life easier and your manager happier. Don’t forget to track the return on investment and adjust along the way if needed. 

Things you should avoid

Don’t change your branding

Now that we covered what you should do, it’s time to meet the don’ts. You’re probably considering one of them for your campaign and don’t even know it. Like maybe change your logo’s colors to something more holiday specific? Or perhaps the typography, packaging, and messaging? After all, it’s that special time of the year, right? Don’t get us wrong. We love it when brands add a twist to their marketing campaigns. And we trust that you’ll find clever ways to incorporate holiday specific elements without actually changing your brand. People are confused enough after having a bit too much to drink at family dinners. At least make it easier for them to recognize your brand.

 Don’t go crazy with holiday promotions

 There’s nothing wrong with rolling out some special offers to drive in customers. In fact, you should do it. The overdoing part is what we’re referring to here. People love discounts, sure, but they also appreciate good entertainment, engagement, and education. So if your only plan is to make it rain with discounts, we’re sorry to let you know that this falls under the umbrella of don’ts. Mix those special offers with some friendly content. The internet will be flooded with discounts and aggressive marketing. Stand out.  

Don’t forget to schedule social media posts 

So you went over the top to create this amazing, out of this world content. Graphic designers and videographers were involved. The legal team approved it. And now it’s going to become viral. Except you forget to schedule it. And you’re forced to say “Hey, guys, Thanksgiving should be celebrated everyday!”. Riiight. Here’s a different scenario. With Planable, you can strategically plan and schedule your content by drag and dropping posts in your predefined time slots. It takes seconds. You can then enjoy a cup of hot cocoa while seeing everything at a glance across all your pages. 

Don’t overlook collaboration and approval

We all need some sort of approval process. Even when we say we don’t because “we trust each other”. As a general rule, our industry has to internalize that review and approval are important. They are not about control. Nor are they about a lack of trust. They’re simply there because more brains add up to better results, more pairs of eyes add up to flawless content, and more types of expertise add up to progress. Sure, forgiveness during the holiday season can be one of the best gifts you give to yourself. But we’re pretty sure your audience isn’t going to overlook that typo. Shockingly (not), we recommend trying out Planable. It’s not an add-on, it’s not a feature, it’s an entire tool built for the sole sake of making social media collaboration seamless.

Don’t use a one-size-fits-all approach

Not all people are the same. Not all channels bring the same results. Then why use a one-size-fits-all approach? Your goal is not only to reach as many people as possible but also to provide them with content they’ll love, in a format they’ll enjoy. Divide your audience into smaller groups such as existing customers, warm leads, people you want to reach, and so on. Stalk them a little. Where do they hang out? What are they sharing? What’s their mother’s maiden name? Scratch that. This will help you narrow down your channels of distribution and content formats. More time for creativity. Yay!
That’s all, folks! 
P.S. If you want super helpful resources for the other upcoming holidays too, download our Holiday Kit 2020 that contains everything you need to create perfect campaigns for Halloween, Thanksgiving, Black Friday, Cyber Monday, Christmas & New Year’s Eve. Bonus: the kits include exclusive discounts for some of the tools we mentioned.
Now go make magic happen!
Raluca Cirjan
Raluca Cirjan

Raluca Cîrjan, Digital Marketing Specialist Advertising enthusiast, fast learner & ailurophile. I believe that one joke a day keeps the doctor away. Feel free to share a funny story with me.



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