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Why September is never too early to mention Christmas

To win big business at Christmas, it’s important to be off the mark early. Here's why you should start planning for the holiday season now.

Some people start think about Christmas earlier than we would ever think

In March 2017, Walsall Football Club started displaying a huge billboard on the M6 advertising festive parties at its venue. The ad appeared a whole 269 days before Christmas.

You may think that this is impossibly early, but they would not have done this if they didn’t think it was going to create business that early in the year.

You might be surprised about the amount of Christmas planning already happening in September

Good Housekeeping magazine also says that the majority of its readers start their Christmas planning in September. By the beginning of the month, “Christmas” is already the most popular search term for many major retailers.

The big retailers and brands are also thinking about Christmas at this time. Large retailers, as well as WTTB have specific Christmas sections live on their websites. Most brands don’t start their Christmas advertising campaigns until the start of November. However, by September they are already carrying out their planning for these campaigns.

If consumers and brands are thinking about Christmas now, you should be too

Companies that start thinking about Christmas in September are more likely to build the right seasonal relationship with more of their customers. They have a better chance of winning more of their customers’ Christmas spending. Early planning will help companies achieve the Christmas results that they want.

Companies that leave their Christmas planning later may struggle to achieve similar results. They will have been beaten by the more organised competition who will have already captured much of peoples’ Christmas spending.

Unless you encourage your customers to start their Christmas planning, you may lose business to the competition. Or your clients may not do enough Christmas marketing. That could affect their results and mean that they have less to send with you next year. Here are three reasons why resellers should start thinking about Christmas now.

Your clients should be ahead of the competition

Remember, most major Christmas advertising campaigns start in November. To have the best chance of winning business, your clients need to start promoting before this time. It’s important to be off the mark quickly.

Make sure your clients understand how the seasonal promotional calendar works. Help them prepare. But be prepared for the next issue.

It will take time to organise your clients

If you start talking about Christmas to your clients now, you are unlikely to receive instant decisions. This is why it is so important to start the dialogue now rather than when you are hoping to win business. If a client is thinking of starting a campaign in October, to beat the competition, they only have four weeks to get everything prepared.

Naturally not all your clients are organised! It helps if you can persuade those who are better at planning to take action now. This means that you will have more time to deal with the inevitable last-minute requests later in the year!

Early planning makes economic sense

The first advantage of planning in advance is that you can use your time more effectively. In an ideal world, organising clients now means less late nights as last-minute Christmas deadlines get nearer.

However, there are other reasons for early planning as well. Some items, such as advent calendars, have limited quantities. The stock for these has to be pre-manufactured. WTTB makes an estimate of how many it will sell during the Christmas season. When this stock sells out there are no more that can be bought in.

In addition, just as in the retail space, there are often price advantages for ordering early. WTTB is offering 10% of advent calendars in September (use code ??). We will also be running special Friday offers on Christmas products over the next couple of months to our Trade Reseller community.

Now you understand why it makes sense to start talking to your clients about Christmas. But what should you do to actually put this into practice?

What should you do to get your clients Christmas planning right now?

1. Check out the WTTB Christmas products section so you have plenty of ideas to inspire your clients with

2. Create a Christmas marketing campaign: decide what products you wish to promote and set up a calendar of when you will share social media, e-mails and direct mail. Consider pre-loading your social media posts and e-mails so that your marketing doesn’t become overtaken by production

3. Consider running an early bird offer to encourage people to take action now

You don’t want every client rushing to you late in the year

We all know there will be last-minute Christmas projects. But they will be so much easier to deal with if you have clients who have managed their Christmas marketing and gifts early.

Whilst you are at it, you should begin planning your personal Christmas too! After all, lots of other people have already started!

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