Consumers start shopping soon but also laterChristmas requires starting work as soon as possible to shield all the weak points that the brand may have.
Christmas may seem like something far away, at least when you look with calendar eyes. After all, there are all November and December and most of October to go before it is really “lawful” to eat nougat and give presents. In fact, the stores are full of pumpkins and spiders and the like for the holiday of Halloween, that party that brands have imported in England, which makes Christmas seem even more and more distant. But while the consumer can afford to think that there is still a lot left for Christmas, brands can’t. The Christmas campaign is something in which brands have to start working and work should not be understood as simply putting nougat on sale in the corner supermarket when things are removed from back to school.
The Christmas campaign is a crucial moment for brands, a key period in which a very important part of the products that will mark the results of the year for companies are sold. It is especially for certain industries, such as toys or electronics (for which Christmas is a crucial time to sell the latest models of certain devices and for which it is a golden time to distribute smartphones or tablets), but In general it is one of the periods of more sales.
Preparing the Christmas campaign does not imply placing a special decoration when the time comes, nor does it foresee having enough wrapping paper to meet the demand there for the month of November. Christmas requires starting work as soon as possible to shield all the weak points that the brand may have. For example, there are few companies that are already starting their hiring processes now to ensure that they will have the staff they need during Christmas, a period in which it is much more complicated to have that availability of workers and in which they are much more necessary never.
But preparing doesn’t just mean hiring staff. You have to start designing the marketing campaign and make forecasts to make it work, you have to lay the foundations and you have to be prepared for what it will take. All this can not be done at the last moment, but you have to start to see what happens right now. In fact, there are few who start working on the Christmas campaign in late summer.
One of the issues on which brands have to work is to detect the marketing and purchasing trends that will mark the Christmas campaign and on which brands have to start working right now, which they have to ensure before Make it too late. What are these trends? As they point out in an analysis based on the observations of Michael Klein, director of industry strategy for retail at Adobe, everything can be summed up in controlling demand and offering the best messages.
Consumers start shopping soon but also later
Klein, which is based on figures and forecasts from the US market, points out that more and more consumers use the Thanksgiving bridge and the consequent Black Friday to do their Christmas shopping and to get gifts and consumer products. These purchases are also made more and more from the mobile and less and less from the desktop. Although the data are from the US market, they are a sign of caution for the rest of the markets. Now that brands have managed to get Black Friday out of the US and become a kind of global celebration, companies have to be very careful not to neglect this sales trend.
Although many consumers buy very soon, they don’t all. In fact, another of the great trends associated with Christmas shopping is that there are more and more consumers waiting until the last moment to buy online and this is something that companies, although it may seem a lie, have to start working right now . Companies have to start refining their logistics strategies if they want to connect with these consumers who will leave everything for the last minute, since being able to make fast shipments (having planned that reality) will be key to success.
You have to start saving data and more data to connect with the consumer who wants personalized content
The biggest trend of the year in shopping for the Christmas campaign will be personalization. Consumers want the shopping experience to be personal and personalized and they don’t care if they are in the store or online. The brand has to be up to par. For this, brands have to have the flow of information necessary to connect with the consumer and to offer that personalized reality. Achieving all that data is not something that can be done in one day.
It is the last call to join the mobile
Consumers will buy more and more from mobile devices and, if they don’t buy, they will use it more and more to access information and to support their shopping experience (welcome to the universe of omnichannel shopping!). In this scenario, brands have no choice but to work to achieve positioning in this field. They have to improve their mobile presence and they have to create a good mobile strategy. And that can’t be done in a day. They have to get to it right now, if they don’t want the bull to catch them by the horns.
The consumer expects the mobile to be a consumer tool during the campaign, with mobile promotions or with last minute offers via smartphone.
It’s not just something the ‘usual suspects’ have to work on ’
On the list of things that brands are showing interest for the Christmas campaign are, of course, virtual reality and artificial intelligence. The expert sees a lot of potential in virtual reality as an element that will help connect with consumers and believes that artificial intelligence will help reduce the workload for company teams, but still you could say that there seems to be still a both far or out of reach of even a large number of companies.
However, when analyzing the unusual things in these lists, another element must be taken into account, not that it has nothing to do with technology and a lot with consumer habits. In online purchases, more and more items that were not recurring, such as food, are being bought. It is not yet an overwhelming majority, but an interesting number of consumers who value the convenience of shopping online.