Memorial Day is a day of remembrance for those who gave the ultimate sacrifice while serving in the American military. Yet many brands forget the serious nature of this day and post tone-deaf social media posts about the start of the summer.

Here are some guidelines to help you create an appropriate social media post to honor Memorial Day.

1) Don’t say “Happy Memorial Day.” I know companies do it but “happy” and “memorial” don’t always go hand in hand. For many Americans, this is a painful day of remembrance. Keep that in mind when crafting your message. Just honor those who have served in the military with a simple message or quote (see examples).

  • We remember and honor those who have lost their lives in military service.
  • Thank you to the brave men and women who have made the ultimate sacrifice.
  • Let us remember those who courageously gave their lives.
  • Join us as we remember and honor our heroes.
  • Honoring our nation’s heroes on Memorial Day.
  • Thank you to the brave men and women who have made the ultimate sacrifice.
  • We salute our fallen and give thanks on this Memorial Day.
  • Today we express our gratitude to our fallen heroes.
  • In remembrance of our heroes on this Memorial Day.
  • Include a famous quote
    • “How important it is for us to recognize our heroes and she-roes.” – Maya Angelou
    • “My fellow Americans, ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country.” – John F. Kennedy
    • “Those who have long enjoyed such privileges as we enjoy forget in time that men have died to win them.” – Franklin D. Roosevelt

2) Recognize Memorial Day respectfully. It’s great to honor the veterans who lost their lives and put their lives on the line for the nation, but don’t insert your brand into this conversation, since it can seem insensitive. Patriotic but apolitical images, such as an American flag or the Statue of Liberty, are appropriate.

3) Don’t say anything at all. For some companies, it may be better to not do a post, especially if it doesn’t feel authentic to your brand. Just because you can shoehorn your brand into a holiday or trending topic, doesn’t mean you should. Note that many people will be away from their devices this weekend and they don’t remember silence, but they do remember mistakes.

4) Don’t use this day to sell your products/services under any circumstances. This should be self-explanatory.

If you choose to post about Memorial Day, just make sure to use the utmost sensitivity when crafting your message and keep in mind what this day is all about. Use the hashtag #MemorialDay to help your post become more discoverable.

Thank your veterans and always remember those who have fallen.