It’s already started. Just a day after Halloween the Christmas decorations are up in the shopping centres and Santa’s workshop is being prepared for family photos of crying children on Santa’s lap.

It should be no shock that shopping centres and retail are all over Christmas – it’s their biggest time of year. But what about your business? You might not be in retail, and your business might slow down over this time of year, but your overheads are still the same. And with less operating days to make profits, it can be a challenging time for business. So are there ways that you can make Christmas work for you?

Many service-based businesses or non-retail focused businesses neglect Christmas and the marketing opportunities it brings. Think it’s all just for retail – not so. There are sales and marketing opportunities for a wide range of businesses this festive season.

Don’t forget, Christmas isn’t just about gift giving. It’s about entertaining, having time to work around your home, taking family holidays, spending more time with friends and tackling projects that have taken a backseat all year – both business projects and personal.

So think laterally about how you can use the festive season to market your business, to look for new customers, touch base with dormant customers and try to grow your existing customers.