Conquering the Festive Sales Rush

We may have been starved of precious Vitamin D-infused happiness by a distinctly sub-par summer this year, but as the days begin to draw ever shorter, new reasons to get excited are abound - especially for TV advertisers.

For business owners operating within the retail sector, this excitement may already be transforming into frenzy. Before leaves have even begun to brown, businesses will be studiously scrutinising market trends to establish a clear and watertight plan of TV action. Companies intent on boosting brand fame, launching new products and increasing sales all regard this time of year as a fantastic opportunity to achieve their goals, and with good reason.

The Winter of Convenience

At the forefront of current considerations will be the building of momentum – achieved through a balance of reach and frequency – prior to certain events scheduled for the second half of November. Last year’s pre-Christmas maelstrom of Black Friday and Cyber Monday generated an eye-watering £1.5 billion in combined sales over just 48 hours, rising 60% and 15% year-on-year respectively as a fever gripped UK consumers.

This significant upsurge in retail spending has been driven by several factors. The timing is of course important, with both ‘cultural events’ occurring just after the final payday before Christmas. There’s also the weather, with colder temperatures and shorter days lowering the desire to venture outdoors and ‘physically’ shop. This ties in with the ever-growing consumer demand for convenience, whilst the affordability facilitated by discounts, free delivery and other special offers is another huge incentive.

Last year over 80% of UK consumers purchased Christmas presents online, with 32% of that customer base buying via mobile. This trend has been partly driven by the growing synergy between TV and online – or, in other words, the much-trumpeted ‘dual-screen viewing’ phenomenon – which brings greater convenience, speed and interaction to the buying experience.

With apps and other integrated technologies streamlining the transaction journey even further – to the extent that TV advertising is now regarded as the new point-of-sale medium – this year’s festive rush promises to reduce the stresses and pressures of finding gifts for the family more so than ever before.

Cold Months Bring Hot Competition

The propensity to shop online has in turn galvanised an increase in online retailers, the likes of whom are launching increasingly larger and more ambitious marketing strategies as a result of ever growing competition. This swell in online retailers can be attributed directly to the exploding demand for such services, with research from Mintel showing how online sales are set to rise year-on-year by 14.8% over the course of 2015. According to studies from the Centre for Retail Research, this equates to £1,174 being spent per shopper, totalling £52.25 billion in estimated sales. Such stats make the UK Europe’s biggest online retail market, whilst also placing it ahead of the USA.

However, in order for businesses to profit from this huge increase over the autumn and winter months, it is imperative to create a brand image and marketing campaign that distinguishes your company from the competition. A failure to do so is akin to unveiling an aerial banner amid low-lying cloud – nobody will see it.

There are various ways that businesses can increase their visibility in the run-up to Christmas, with discounts and voucher codes one method of enticing engagement. As previously stated, we live in an age that empowers the consumer; with greater shrewdness and more choice putting brands under pressure to deliver more incentives. Voucherbox.co.uk conducted a study that highlights this point, with 57% of UK respondents citing discounts as a major influence on their online spending. Structured, strategic social media activity and a robust SEO performance are two further components that are vital to the creation of an online presence fit to maximise the effects of a TV advertising campaign.

The Stage Is Set for Your TV Campaign

With TV viewing typically higher in the cold winter months of October, November, December and January, this time of year sees the likes of ITV, Channel 4 and Sky unveiling their most anticipated TV programmes – and 2015 is set to be no different. Already, we’ve had the X Factor return to the small screen, whilst I’m A Celebrity, Celebrity Big Brother and the final ever series of Downton Abbey will all be fixtures throughout Q4 of 2015.

Let’s also not forget the 2015 Rugby World Cup, Premier League fixtures on Sky and BT Sport, and the Football League coverage now exclusive to Channel 5. And if that wasn’t enough, we have quality dramas such as Jekyll & Hyde and Beowulf to look forward to.

Great content attracts high viewing audiences, which naturally require a slightly larger spend. Yet, even for businesses with smaller budgets, the TV advertising landscape is ripe for harvest, with over 260 commercial channels catering for niche interests and specific audience groups. This, allied with the fact that TV is now 40% less expensive than it was a decade ago (Thinkbox), makes reaching specific viewers more cost-efficient than ever before.

With the likes of Sky Adsmart, ITV and Channel 4 also providing highly targeted TV advertising platforms tailored to meet specific goals, advertisers really are spoilt for choice with the options available to them in the festive sales rush of 2015.

Call Guerillascope today on 0800 357 675 to learn more about the ways we support sustainable business growth.