Consumer spending tends to slow in the Autumn, Spring and swell in Summer, Winter. Winter namely due to Christmas (and stockpiling for potential bad snow days). Summer obviously is due to the huge increase in entertainment and outgoing activities.
With this in mind, it makes sense to hedge more of our offline marketing budget towards these seasons. Higher general consumer spending generally means a better return on investment. Online not so much, as chronic growth has been experienced for years.
In this blog post, we’ll be going over some winter field marketing essentials.
Why Do We Care About Christmas as Marketers?
This question ultimately boils down to two things – the emotional aspect of spending, and the social aspect of spending.
We spend more when we’re spending from emotion (happy, sad, anger as long as the emotion is extreme). At Christmas, the joy of loved ones, of seeing your child open gifts from Santa. The magic, the mystical, the warm cosy fires hidden from the biting frost.
Christmas is all about that warm, homely, family, love orientated emotion. This makes us spend more, and feel better about it at the same time!
It’s a ripe combination for generating positive brand relations and ultimately revenue.
Some Christmas Data For You on Marketing and Consumer Spending
December 2017 saw above average consumer spending growth (4% versus 3.2% for 2017 [Thanks Barclays!]). This trend is likely in part due to people protecting their money throughout the autumn months through fear of financial troubles tied to rising prices ahead of Brexit, stagnating wages and other factors.
December 2018 may well follow this above-average trend, if not consumer spending will still be way up at £332billion and experiencing yearly growth. This yearly growth also means that it’s always a good time to be building brand awareness amongst consumers. Every year that passes, the consumer spending pie typically outpaces inflation, with Christmas and summer always a good bet for maximising return on investment for active sales&field marketing.
Plan Your Campaigns Early
During the Christmas period, any brand looking to grow their business prospects will be actively marketing (ourselves included!). Almost everyone we’ve worked with in the past would agree regarding much-increased demand around Christmas (both marketers and consumer-facing brands).
As such, the demand on temporary staff, venues, logistics etc is significantly increased. This extra demand can often create situations in which the demand outpaces the supply. The supply in our case being our expert in-field marketing staff. London, in particular, sees a huge increase in demand, no doubt in part due to the fact its economy slows down far less during Winter compared to the rest of the UK.
Booking your campaigns early with us ensures that you get priority on our best staff on the days you want before anyone else. We’ve already booked out hundreds of staff on dozens of days during Winter, and as December approaches we’re expecting heavy demand on most days.
Ensure Your Products Are Displayed to Sell
Getting your products on store shelves is one of the best ways to make them sell. Once you have your products in-store, you can increase your overall sales with occasional merchandising of your products. Merchandising ensures your brand’s products are well presented, properly priced, displayed in the agreed place etc.
We do a lot of field marketing work, and one of the most common things our clients ask for us merchandising newly launched products on a national scale. Ensuring every store is selling your products the best they can is a quick and easy way to raise your bottom line. In some instances over 10% of stores we visit don’t even have newly launched products on the shelves (and sometimes not even in stock!). Correcting this ASAP with proactive merchandising will ensure more profit than letting issues (hopefully) resolve themselves.
Tie Your Real World Campaigns to Online Marketing
Online shopping now accounts for close to 20% of consumer spending. Consumers spending habits are influenced both online and offline.
The development and rapid uptake of branded social media has created a unique opportunity. People who regularly buy your brand (offline or online) can essentially become no or low cost online ambassadors by “liking” or “sharing” your brand’s activity on social media. This results in Facebook (or Twitter, Instagram etc) being more likely to show your posts to their friends and family.
Considering almost all of us are on some form of social media, this easy activity for the consumer can drastically increase online exposure and ultimately sales and brand loyalty.
How do you tie the two together?
Simply, encouraging those who enjoy your brand’s products or services in the real world to become no cost brand ambassadors online. This can be as simple as saying “Follow us on Facebook” on product design or providing a business card to those enjoying your in-store free samples that features your social media handles. If the consumer likes your products enough they may even seek you out online without any encouragement from you.
All in all, succeeding as a brand at Christmas means following effective methods throughout the year. It is prudent to take extra care around winter and summer to maximise the returns on your investments.