Competition is at an all-time-high, and as consumers grapple with the ever changing cost of living, making an impact within your creative ads has never been more important.
Which is why we sat down with our creative specialists from across the globe to collate a list of steps you can take to get ready for Christmas.
Just because Christmas is at the end of the year doesn’t mean you should wait until Q4 to start thinking about your campaign. Especially when over 50% of shoppers start Christmas shopping before October — meaning your window of opportunity may open and close earlier than you think. Take advantage of the festive anticipation and build hype and excitement leading up to Christmas.
“I remember being stood on Oxford Street in July during the hottest day of the year holding a rather disgruntled reindeer in place, whilst my colleague showered us in fake snow. All in the name of peddling a client’s upcoming festive range” – Tom Williams, Incubeta Creative Director, UAE
Personalization isn’t just a buzzword; it’s the key to resonating with your audience during peak seasons. The modern consumer expects to be approached by companies with a personal touch – and this is especially true throughout the festive period. Tailor your messaging, visuals and offers based on the consumer’s audience segment, preferences, behaviors and interests so that your creatives are relevant and resonate with them as much as possible. Remember to prioritize customer value, using it both as a starting point and an end goal.
Use Your Data
Analyzing past behavioral trends/ patterns, and integrating this into your creative strategy will help guide your approach and allow you to set realistic expectations. Understanding your own data will make sure you’re fully prepared, whilst allowing you to build on your success in peak season and keep it going into the following year. The festive season brings specific trends and patterns, and you need a creative strategy flexible enough to understand that data is what will keep your creative campaigns agile and reactive to changes as they emerge.
“Peak season success thrives on data-infused creativity that anticipates trends, captivates audiences, and evolves in real-time” – Veronica Brits, Incubeta Creative Commercial Director, EMEA
In the modern world, the festive season is a time for everyone and doesn’t discriminate. It is intended to be a time of giving and goodwill, that should be reflected in creative campaigns. Real effort and consideration should be made to demonstrate inclusivity so that everyone in your target audience feels acknowledged and catered for.
Engage Your Audience
Use interactivity to engage the audience. Run campaigns that feature contests, quizzes, polls and gamification that are related to the event. These types of engagement-driven approaches can really boost brand awareness, favorability and recall.
“Interactive creatives are often memorable and appreciated experiences that help establish an emotional connection with consumers and can significantly influence their decision making when it comes to peak season purchases” – Cory Hudson, Incubeta Senior Vice President Creative, US
Read the Room
Every calendar year develops underlying trends or common topics everyone remembers or relates to. Leverage these themes in your campaigns, but remember public sentiment can change with the wind, so it’s important to keep tabs on the behavioral patterns to make sure your campaign will be relevant by the time Peak season arrives.
Keep It Authentic
Don’t try to force a narrative into your campaigns. If you segway from your brand values, or those of your consumers you can come across as insincere, and the growing sophistication of audiences makes it easier to spot a brand that is clearly trying to leverage a situation for its own profit. Talk in a language that your consumers understand and comment on topics that are relevant to your brand.
Seamless Omni-Channel Integration
A successful creative strategy must seamlessly span across multiple channels, ensuring a consistent brand experience. Your audience doesn’t live on just ‘one channel’, and neither should you. Clever and sophisticated creatives will look at opportunities to interact through multiple touch points; both physical and digital. Omni Channel campaigns help reinforce a consistent narrative to drive awareness and consideration at a time when market competition will be at its highest. However, be smart and target the channels where your audience is most prevalent.
Are you ‘creative ready’ for Christmas? If not, get in touch with our creative experts and get your ducks in a row this peak season.