Christmas: Tis the Season to be On Air

We need to talk about Christmas. Yes, you’ve already heard every Christmas song at least three times, burst a blood vessel lugging that 7ft tree back home, and resigned yourself to the fact that Margaret in the accounts team is going to look at your Secret Santa gift with bemusement and, quite possibly, fear.

Nonetheless, if you’re a business owner intent on securing your share of the Christmas market, then hear us out. For there is still time to harness the power of festive TV, with our flexible way of working meaning not only can we have you on air with just three working days notice; but also secure you fantastic last-minute deals.

Rockin’ around, the TV set

As the days grow shorter and the weather colder, we instinctively gravitate towards the warmth of indoors and relaxation of the TV set. Viewing figures consequently increase, delivering larger and more varied audiences. Over Christmas, these audiences swell substantially, with families congregating around the TV as a means of spending quality time in one another’s company - or staving off boredom. This represents a great opportunity for businesses intent on boosting brand fame, launching new products and increasing sales.

By appealing to the empathetic sentiments of the season in their creatives and attaching their brand, product or service to themes such as family, love, altruism and nostalgia, advertisers stand to benefit considerably from shared viewing and the ever-growing propensity to multiscreen whilst watching live TV.

This phenomenon considerably shortens the journey from awareness – or, in other words, the airing of a TV ad – to online purchase: it creates one unified marketing channel that combines TV’s reach, prestige and ability to engage, with the response mechanisms and access points abundant online. If a brand can establish the right creative approach, the chances of fully harnessing and benefiting from the unique opportunities fostered by the festive season are boosted considerably. Opportunities that needn’t cost the earth to access.

The value of going against the grain

One of the key variables that determines the costs of advertising on TV is the time of day a TV spot airs. The peak day-part – which stretches from 17:30 through to 23:00 – is typically the domain of the most expensive, premium TV advertising inventory; the airtime most sought after when trying to achieve brand frame and maximum coverage. Typically, vierwing figures are three times greater than the average adult daytime (09:30-17:30) audience, which naturally costs less to access.

However, over the Christmas period – specifically from the 24th December through to 1st January – viewing during the daytime day-part (09:30-17:30) increases significantly. In fact, certain programming slots even attract audiences comparable to those measured in peak. This means that advertisers can access larger audiences at lower, daytime rates.

Coupled with this is the fact that, due to supply and demand, the costs of advertising on TV over the last two weeks of December and into early January are cheaper than at any other time of the year. The reason for this is simple: many brands cease advertising during this period – despite the sizeable viewing audiences available to advertisers – thus increasing supply and lowering unit costs. To substantiate this, our research shows that on Christmas Day last year, 712 brands were on air, compared to the 1,359 that advertised on November 25th.

It's time to flex your muscle

So, with the number of TV advertisers on air essentially halving over Christmas, there is a huge opportunity for smaller businesses and TV newcomers to muscle in on market share, achieve instant brand fame, and engage the television viewers central to their business. The onus is on advertisers to be bold, act now, and provide a compelling enough motivation for viewers to engage. Succeed, and with over 74% of UK TV viewers claiming to research a product or service online after seeing it advertised on TV, this Christmas could be an extremely merry one for your business indeed.