Christmas always brings memorable commercials and lots of sales, but beyond the products and offers, the holiday season is always a good time to focus on your Brand Awareness.
Roasted chestnuts, typical sweets, trees, and presents… Christmas brings with it many joys, all with a very familiar, warm feeling, that we have a special affection for. Equally, it is important to keep in mind that the festive season is also the biggest shopping season, in terms of quantity and cost, of the whole year.
This is why the vast majority of brands choose to run large promotional campaigns to sell their products during this time. But there is an exception for some companies, who instead choose to sell themselves as brands, rather than selling a product directly to their customers. This is what we call a Brand Awareness campaign.
Why run Christmas campaigns?
Christmas, as we have mentioned, is the season with the highest sales volume for companies, and as a result, is a very important time to stand out from your competitors. From the outset, the competence factor is vital. If your brand does not run a campaign, your competitors will probably do so – something you cannot allow under any circumstances.
In addition, Christmas is a festive period that is culturally sentimental. As a result, at this time of year, many family memories emerge, all strongly associated with certain values and moments. If your brand is a part of those moments, those good values will be associated with you. But, if your brand is not part of those existing moments, we can always associate them with those values later, through a good campaign.
So, whether you decide to run a product-focused campaign, or one focused on brand awareness. The importance of expressing and associating these values in your campaigns is clear, allowing customers to empathise with what they have seen. As a result, Brand Awareness is a differential value when they choose between your products and those of your competition.
This kind of campaign, for example, is usually closely linked to the format of short films. Using the support of great storytelling, in which the product is merely a MacGuffin or a prop.
When should we focus on Brand Awareness?
As previously mentioned, the usual and recommended approach is to run a Christmas campaign. Choosing to focus either on a promotional or product campaign, or purely on Brand Awareness.
However, it is also important that, whatever kind of campaign you choose, there are some associated brand values included to encourage empathy. As a result, we tend to see brands focus their entire campaign on Brand Awareness, leaving the purchasing arguments of the product, and the product itself, in the background.
This kind of campaign, for example, is usually closely linked to the format of short films. Using the support of great storytelling, in which the product is merely a MacGuffin or a prop. Brands such as Coca-Cola, Suchard or Christmas Lottery campaigns are some good examples of this.
In general, the brands that choose to focus on Brand Awareness are usually those with previously well recognised products. And so, as a result, they are looking to associate those traditional Christmas values and feelings with their brand, to encourage increased Christmas shopping.
On the other hand, if a product is not very well known, even the best Brand Awareness campaign will not be useful, as it will not be able to associate those values with an unknown product. In this instance, it would be better to adopt an intermediate point, or perhaps focus more on the product.
We should not lie to ourselves. It is not normal to focus only on Brand Awareness, because there are very few brands in each market niche that can actually afford to do that. But we should also not reject the line completely. We can run a product campaign and associate those values for Brand Awareness through other communication strategies across networks.
For those lesser-known brands, a smart way to implement Brand Awareness is through Inbound Marketing campaigns, using content to humanise your brand and associate it with the specific actions and moments related to these special dates.
Offering «freemium» products, using storytelling to combine a product campaign with a Brand Awareness campaign, participating in local sponsored events, or running a specific CSR campaign, are all effective ways to surround a product campaign with all of the values that will help build trust with your brand and improve the relationship with consumers.
What should a Christmas Action Plan contain?
Once we have defined the strategies we wish to implement, according to the sales and Brand Awareness objectives that we have, it is important to define a minimum number of actions through which we can achieve these goals. Here we will discuss the minimums on which we should build our action plan for these dates:
- Timing: No matter the strategy we choose to implement, any action plan for its achievement must have a specific and defined timetable, to be able to adjust to the purchasing processes and the main festive dates.
- Online and offline actions: On the one hand, online actions will allow us to connect with a larger number of potential customers at any time and place. But offline actions also have a part to play, for example at points of sale, where they can have influence over the final purchase. These two actions are not mutually exclusive so, if we can, we should cover both as much as possible.
- Well-defined and achievable objectives and targets: Or rather, let’s do things with common sense. We must go into any campaign with a clear definition of who we are targeting and what we want to achieve from them, so that the subsequent design of our actions steps is adjusted precisely to the specifics of the campaign.
What do you think of these brand awareness tips for your Christmas campaigns? You still have time to react and create a solid campaign to hurry up those Christmas sales!
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See you next time!