Infosec Brands: Forget the Seasonal Listicle. Try These Ideas Instead.

Infosec Brands: Forget the Seasonal Listicle

It is the season of the listicle. A few weeks from now, half of all infosec blogs are going to feature an article called something like “10 of the Biggest Hacks and Mistakes in Information Security for 2018.” (The other half are going to have a blog called “Top 10 Information Security Predictions for 2019.”)

Does anyone actually read these blogs?

Whether or not to create seasonal content around information security is an interesting question. On the one hand, information security is not a seasonal business. No one is going out to buy their partner an enterprise-class firewall before the 25th

On the other hand, regardless of how seasonal a business is or isn’t, customer buying patterns change as the end of the year approaches – and the end of the year is no exception. Here’s what to consider when you’re considering a seasonal marketing campaign around information security.

Consider Whose Needs are Changing

Information security is a B2B business. And we often think of seasonal marketing as a tool for B2B customers. That doesn’t rule out seasonal marketing for information security practitioners, however. That’s because some of the companies and organizations who buy your product experience their most intense vulnerabilities during the holiday season.

Ecommerce, retail, service, and travel industries all experience huge spikes in revenue during the holiday season. Black Friday weekend sales beat analyst projections and grew 6.4% this year, for an estimated total of $60 billion. Total holiday spending is expected to exceed $1 trillion.

From a security perspective, any ecommerce company whose shop goes down will lose that revenue. If their site becomes infected with credit card skimmers, they will lose revenue and reputation. Any company that relies on seasonal business to make ends meet becomes a huge target for criminals and extortionists in Q4 – making them an excellent candidate for seasonal marketing efforts.

Different Approaches to Seasonal Blogs

As we mentioned in our introduction, “Year in Review” articles has been absolutely done to death. In addition, leading with the fear of being hacked might not always be your best approach. How should marketers choose seasonal subject matter?

One idea is to do a retrospective that looks further back than just one year. For example, several notable viruses and cyberattacks occurred during the holidays. The Happy99 virus spread during New Year’s Eve of that same year and is considered the first malware to spread through email, though all it did was make your computer display fireworks. A similar virus, known as Christmas Tree, spread via email attachments on the Arpanet back in 1987. (No points for guessing what it made your computer display).

Here’s another idea: Instead of doing one or two pointless listicles, do a rapid succession of deep dives into information security topics. We’ve already written about how brands that post more often tends to convert at higher rates. Well, the holiday season provides plenty of opportunities to give your content calendar a workout.

Think of an information security advent calendar.

Each door in the calendar is an appropriately-themed article about information security, covering past security incidents, different kinds of security technologies, different security regulations, etc. The point is to quickly add up to 24 different articles to your backlog in rapid succession, giving readers an excuse to keep coming back. Can’t keep up? Maybe try for the 12 days of Christmas or the seven nights of Hanukkah.

The point is, as long as you’ve correctly identified your marketing segment, there are plenty of ways to make interesting seasonal content around information security as a topic.

If you’re looking for ways to make this topic interesting around the rest of the year, we have you covered as well. Sign up for the nDash platform and build a content community that will help you make content that hooks information security professionals and converts all year round.

About the author: 

Andrew Sanders is a professional freelance writer on nDash. His clients include IANS, TechTarget, AppNeta, Hitachi, and dozens more. To learn more about Andrew – and to have him write for your brand – please see his nDash profile page.