The weather may be anything but frightful, but planning for the holidays now can be quite delightful. Getting a head start on your holiday strategy is a sure-fire way to experience some holiday sales cheer.
Last year Cyber Monday beat Black Friday for the first time as the busiest shopping day of the year. This year, consumers are expected to continue to shop online in record numbers. According to a preliminary forecast by BIGInsight, 10.2 percent of consumers plan to spend more this holiday vs. 6.5 percent last year at this time.
Why the rush? Well, for one thing, you'll want to develop creative that incorporates sight, sound and motion, like high-impact, rich media. You'll need the extra time to produce assets that will have an impact, such as developing online video. Whether it is being played on a desktop or a tablet, online video is the perfect way to capture the attention of a potential holiday shopper. We'll see a lot more online video incorporated into digital campaigns this holiday. Even luxury brands, long accustomed to traditional media like print and television, will be embracing online video. We just ran a luxury brands study and found that 92 percent of luxury brands will be shifting budgets from TV into online video.
While you are working with your creative and production teams on your holiday campaign, there are a number of opportunities to consider that can help you unwrap sales this season.
A Holly Jolly Election Year
Driving the potential holiday cheer is an expected surge in consumer confidence following the presidential election in November. Historically, a presidential election year triggers higher consumer confidence and spending. "I expect holiday sales to be up three to four percent," noted Greg Buzek, president of IHL group.
A Merry Mobile Holiday
Consumers have put the pressure on retailers to prepare for the mobile revolution. Impressive results from last year's holiday season are motivating retailers to strengthen their mobile strategies in 2012. For example, on Christmas Day 2011, consumers increased mobile shopping by 173 percent over the previous year according to the study titled: Google Post Holiday 2011 Takeaways. Additionally, 12 percent of online visits to a retailer's web site came from a mobile device during the 2011 holidays, a five percent year-over-year increase.
Consumers Eager to Spread Holiday Cheer
In its 2012 Annual Holiday Report, Epsilon discovered that consumers want to make 'big-decision' purchases early in the holiday season. How early is early? Well, according to Harris Interactive, some shoppers have already set their sights on the holiday season. As Christmas in July sales ramp up, more than one in 10 (13 percent) of U.S. adults reveal they have already started shopping for the 2012 holiday season. In addition, nearly one in five (17 percent) said they plan to take advantage of Christmas in July sales for their holiday shopping this year.
Tom O’Regan is a seasoned advertising executive with an expertise in vertical publishing and sales strategy. As CRO of Martini Media, he is responsible for company-wide advertising revenue and operations. Tom can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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