It’s almost Thanksgiving. And while we anxiously await our share of the 675 pounds of turkey Americans consume on this day each year, we've been thinking. What if social media had existed back in 1621 for the very first Thanksgiving dinner? Hmmm.... Cue the dream sequence music in 3, 2, 1...
Governor William Bradford organized the first feast to thank the Native American tribes who helped the pilgrims stay alive after landing at Plymouth. The invite was probably spread the old-fashioned way: word of mouth and fall of feet. But if Facebook had been around, he would have been able to Create an Event, Invite everyone on his Friends list, Share the Event on his Wall, and even Sponsor the story so more people in his network would see it.
Facebook plays an important role in holiday marketing today, too. Keep your community full of happy pilgrims by tailoring your messaging and content to the holiday. Change your cover photo to something seasonal, ask which dishes are favorites, or create a Thanksgiving Day holiday quiz. For example, did you know that because of a sugar shortage there were no pies or cakes at the first Thanksgiving? You do now!
Twitter was born for day-of-event social media. (Remember how prominent Twitter became during the London 2012 Olympics?) The first Thanksgiving would have been the hottest event Plymouth Rock had ever seen, and if Twitter had been around you can be sure that people would have been tweeting about everything from Mayflower fashion to the dishes passing ‘round the table.
Twitter is an excellent opportunity for brands to resolve customer service issues or crowdsource new ideas. Perhaps The Guvna should secure his re-election by reaching out to Mrs. Corey, apologize about the lack of sugary baked goods and recommend the sweet sugar beets dish as a substitute? Probably a #GoodIdea.
More than 70 percent of Pinterest users say they use the site for recipe inspiration and content curation, according to a study by PriceGrabbers. According to Pinterest data directory Repinly, 11.9 percent of the most popular pins come from the food and drink category. And since Pinterest allows you to Share Boards with other users, it would have been a smorgasboard of recipe swapping between the pilgrims and the Wampanoag tribe.
If you've got great graphics, it pays to Pin it! Start a Thanksgiving board and look through your content suited to the holiday. Get creative! Show local Thanksgiving-themed events, restaurants and attractions that are open on Turkey Day, and decoration ideas. Recipes are always a safe bet, too. It couldn't hurt to share your great-aunt's award-winning mashed potato recipe.
Some things never change, no matter how far back you go in history. If the guests of the first Thanksgiving dinner had had Instagram accounts, there probably would have been a lot of photos of food, kids, and shoes. At least, that’s what we put up on Instagram nowadays. Instagram photos would be a great way for everyone actually at the first Thanksgiving dinner to brag to their friends about it.
Whether you plan to Tweet, Update, or Share tomorrow, we hope you have a Happy Thanksgiving!