Why Christmas Is The Envy Of Brands

Derrick DayeDecember 24, 20173 min

There is one brand that is the envy of them all. Christmas. Fueled by emotion it has no rival in terms of annual commercial success and its growth continues to accelerate. According to the National Retail Federation holiday retail sales during November and December of 2016 increased 4 percent over 2015 to $658.3 billion. This year some estimates see holiday retail sales exceeding 1 Trillion. To put the success of the Christmas brand in perspective, Apple the world’s most successful company has a market capitalization of $898 billion.

Of course there is much more to this brand than transactions and when you break it down, many gifts in the form of lessons for marketers are revealed. Let’s take a closer look…

1. The Christmas Brand

Christmas defies all the rules of today’s business model driven world. It has never been restructured, never had a major rebranding, only ever been available on one day of the year and never diversified. There’s never been a CEO interview. It doesn’t have its own website. And even the founder has been forgotten by many. As for the brand story! Stars, kings, shepherds, angels, a baby born with no place at the inn, and some weird minerals for gifts.

From a brand management point of view, Christmas is a mess. There’s no standard logotype, the typeface is old fashioned, the color palette hasn’t changed in ages, and the naming regime is inconsistent.

Still Christmas lives on. It may lack all the pizzazz and press release hype of modern business thinking, but every year, it prompts millions of people to undertake a shopping frenzy that frays tempers, drains bank accounts and raises expectations to astonishing levels. And every year, people from across the globe go to church for services they don’t know, crowd into parks to sing carols they can’t remember, and wish each other a joyous festive season, while feverishly anticipating what they are going to get in return. Read More

2. Building The Christmas Brand

Christmas is a brand hand-crafted by and for the people. It is a diverse stew of traditions… many of which are thousands of years old… while others surprisingly quite contemporary.

Did you know there are a slew of Christmas traditions invented and/or made popular by marketers? Read More

3. The Yuletide Story Of Coke, Santa Claus And Perception

Gradually, Coke became accepted as a staple of Christmas and Santa Claus was forever defined in the image of Coca-Cola. Read More

4. Building Brands With Occasion Based Marketing

Habits are powerful, but occasions may be even more so. I think they engage us so effectively because they combine time and focus. And because of that, they provide permission – it’s OK to behave this way or that. It’s OK to do something you wouldn’t do on any ordinary day.

If you’re a smart brand, you’ll find a way to hook into that; to link what you’re about to what people are thinking about on specific occasions. You’ll give them a reason and a way to excel at the emotion of the moment. Read More

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays from Branding Strategy Insider.

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