The week between Christmas and New Year's is probably the laziest week of the year. Even if you don't celebrate either, the rest of America probably does, so for marketers, it's also a good week to go heavy on advertising. While the rest of the marketing world has been focused on the run-up to the holidays, the week after is a golden opportunity to get in front of a captive audience. Here's why:
1. Everyone is looking for things to do with their new gadgets. Researcher Flurry reported that there were twice as many downloads on Dec. 25, 2016, as in an average day in December. For many, it is the only time of year when you have hours of free time and are actively looking for apps to download. One activity that many take part in is surfing the web. An analysis from Sandvine shows that though traffic ebbs on Christmas night, on Dec. 26, it jumps 15-20% over the previous week.
2.A lot of people got gift cards for the holidays. Gift cards are a popular option. A WalletHub survey found that it was the most popular gift option by far with 41%. (No. 2 on the list was clothes at 15%.) Last year, Americans spent $46 billion on gift cards. In other words, many consumers are flush this time of year so it's a good time to get in front of them with marketing messages.
3.A lot of people get year-end bonuses. Another reason that consumers are flush this time of year is that a large proportion — up to 80% — get some sort of year-end bonus or gift. On the extreme end, those on Wall Street can expect cumulative bonuses in the $28 billion range. Since 2017 was an especially good year — the Dow was up more than 5,000 points on the year at this writing — that figure will probably be even higher.
4.Shoppers know it's a good time to get deals. Automakers are eager to unload their previous year's models at the end of December, making it one of the top months of the year for new car sales and No. 1 for luxury sales (see "bonuses, Wall Street” above). But savvy shoppers know it's also a great time to buy holiday decorations, toys and TVs, among other items. Savvy retailers know this is the time to advertise to those customers.
5.The New Year's mindset. Early January and late December is prime time for marketers of fitness and weight loss products because that's when people make New Year's resolutions. But not every resolution revolves around physical conditioning. Consumers might decide that they want to do everything from dress better to learn a new language in the new year. It's a time for aspirational messages.
The holidays may seem to culminate with Dec. 25. After that, most people have bought their gifts. But for many of us, the holidays are a week-long celebration. Maybe this year you didn't think of it that way and had nothing left after Christmas. Maybe next year though you might consider putting a bit aside to offer messaging to people when they're in a frame of mind to receive them.