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Are you ready for Christmas 2020?

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by Cam's Writing

It’s (almost) the most wonderful time of the year!

Seeing this blog post, most people would think: Christmas 2020, already? But we’re just halfway through September!

Well… If you work in marketing, you know that the last quarter of the year – also called the golden quarter – is usually dedicated to one thing: the holiday season.

The Ghost of Christmas Past

Last Christmas, I gave you my… Wait, no. Sorry. Let’s start again.

Last Christmas was disappointing for many retailers across the UK. Grocers, clothing and department stores saw a fall in sales in December 2019 compared to the same time in 2018.

Some analyses blame the date of Black Friday last year – at the very end of November, later than usual – but it’s not the only reason for the mediocre sales figures. With more and more consumers switching to online shopping for gifts and even groceries, the pressure on traditional physical retailers kept increasing in 2019.

Preparing for the holiday season from a marketing perspective, it’s also important to note that not everything happens in November-December anymore. Every year, more consumers are planning ahead, beginning their Christmas shopping early. In 2019, some began buying gifts and advent calendars in August.

Christmas 2019 tells us that consumers’ behaviour had already changed before the pandemic. Traditional Christmas shopping trips to the high streets had already become less common before social distancing measures and face-covering in stores.

2020: a Christmas like no other?

Even if it’s hard to tell what Christmas will be like this year, we can definitely say that it’s going to be different and unusual.

Let’s be honest, to save our jobs and keep our companies running, all we want for Christmas is… sales! But this doesn’t mean selling anything to anyone. In order to reach their goals, companies have to acknowledge the current mindset of their customers and tailor their offers accordingly.

Economic crisis, recession and uncertainty mean many people will have a smaller budget in 2020. Therefore, will they look for a more meaningful Christmas this year? Less consumerism, more value given to shared moments and real emotions? Maybe.

Family reunions and travelling to meet loved ones might not be possible – especially international travel. We can wonder then if people who can’t meet in person will try to compensate by buying additional or more expensive presents.

New needs have emerged in 2020. Face masks have become the newest fashion accessory. Millions of people now work from home at least several days a week. Will we see a boom in sales of home office gadgets and accessories?

Personalisation is also a big trend no marketer should ignore, especially around Christmas. When it’s complicated to see each other, gifts personalised with people’s own photos are a good way to remind friends and family of happy moments spent together.

Finally, the pandemic has had an impact on the planet and has awakened the environmental awareness of millions of consumers. More people take into consideration things like the origin and carbon footprint of the gifts they buy. This might push them to look for more sustainable and locally-made gifts, aligned with their ethics and moral values.

Get ready for Christmas 2020

We’re publishing this blog post in September, exactly 100 days before Christmas. For those of you who haven’t started working on it yet, it’s time to prepare for the holiday season! Here’s a list of our best tips and recommendations:

  • Don’t pretend it’s business as usual

From your web content to your sales projection, you have to acknowledge that this Christmas is going to be different from any other you’ve known. Manage yours and your customers’ expectations. Rethink your plan and don’t forget any details such as, for example, possible delays for deliveries.

  • Don’t wait any longer

As we’ve seen before, consumers start their Christmas shopping earlier every year. So it’s ok to mention Christmas in your marketing content as soon as you want. With all the uncertainty, many people have already started thinking about it anyway.

  • Be online

If your business doesn’t have a website yet, get one a.s.a.p. If you have a website, make sure you’ll be able to handle any increase in connections when Christmas approaches. Avoid any maintenance or changes to your e-commerce website during the last quarter.

  • Use Social media

In 2020, having a website is not enough. Every brand needs to work on its social media presence. And don’t be tempted to use social media only for customer service. It’s a great place to showcase your creativity and your brand’s personality, to create a bond with your customers.

  • Play the local business card

During and after lockdown, many of us started shopping locally more often than we used to. Preserving the local businesses has become a concern for everyone, from the consumers to the government. Therefore, being a local business has never been such a good selling point.

  • Adapt your tone of voice

Your customers want to be inspired, not patronised. They want to see compassion, not pushy sales games. Your content should trigger emotions and excitement, without being cheesy or fake. Depending on your brand’s guidelines, you might have to adapt your tone this year.

  • Don’t forget your team

Sales and ROI are good, but a happy team is better. Some of your collaborators might be struggling this year. Some might not be able to join their family, some might even have relatives directly affected by the virus. Be kind to your team. It’s Christmas after all!

 

Cam’s Writing wishes you all the best and good luck for the next few months.
Have yourself a merry little peak time!

In these busy months, don’t hesitate to contact us if you need extra help with your content marketing – or more ideas for Christmas-related puns.