For CPG companies, it’s never too early to put pen to paper and think about how they can make the most out of the holiday season, even if it’s an outline of an idea or a big marketing goal with a splashy budget.
Proper planning and execution require the A-game to convert shoppers. And because competition is so fierce during these months, every interaction counts.
Because we’ve worked with many brands over the years, both big and small, we’ve learned a thing or two about a successful campaign and wanted to pass along some of the wisdom we’ve learned.
How Your CPG Brand Can Navigate the Holidays
Some moments sincerely matter when it comes to the search for CPG holiday insights.
The stakes are high during the holidays, so missing the mark is leaving money on the table. The promotions are meant to get products off the shelves by keeping laser-focused on the push for specific products with discounts.
Planning around specific promotions and mapping a clear creative direction creates a strong “north star” that acts as the signpost to strategy for all holiday promotions to follow during the holiday push.
Historical data drives everything, and top sellers repeat wins by championing historical information. If you sell cookies, and chocolate chip mint is the big Christmas flavor, there’s no reason why peanut butter cookies should be in the conversation.
Wait till spring to see if there’s a possible audience for the new cookies, not when every dollar counts toward future budgets.
The holidays are not the time to experiment with new strategies or test new products; instead, it’s the time of the year to focus on what works and how to do more of that all the time. Past wins should drive how sales are planned and executed for maximum selling.
CPG Trends 2022
Some holiday trends for consumer-packaged goods popped up in 2022, and we loved some of them—one of our favorites being the serialized QR code.
Serialized QR codes are everywhere now in a post-pandemic world, so having them on the packaging makes sense. With serialized QR codes, consumers can scan and enter a brand’s world. From informing the customer on how to use the product, or what they stand for, entering this world offers direct access to whatever culture they wish to create.
We also saw a significant rise in Direct to Consumer (DTC) brands like Dollar Shave Club that are nipping at the heels of the big players, cutting out intermediaries everywhere. And because these products are significantly cheaper than their counterparts, many companies have seen growth by offering bulk products and rolling monthly billing cycles.
Collaborate and Partner
One of the other CPG holiday trends we saw was the rise of brands creating their e-commerce storefronts offering a signature brand.
Private label brands are attractive to retailers because there are better margins and more control over product development. Because of this, smaller brands are brought in to maintain the creation of signature products because they have the infrastructure to create a spicy tortilla chip or a hand lotion.
Walmart and Texas’ HEB have been using their partnerships with smaller companies for decades to push their in-house brands for everything from t-shirts to home décor.
Get Results with Data-Driven Insights
Everything sold touches data and analytics at some point, and CPG brands have been utilizing data to examine how to build supply chain resiliency through on-shelf availability but also realizing that serving customers as a market of one is possible through geo-location.
By bridging the information silos within sales and marketing, CPGs see an impact thanks to harnessing data that breaks down the walls within the enterprise.
Data democratization can drive change quickly, allowing for better targeting and personalization in a privacy-safe way. CPGs want technologies that democratize access to and use data (production, shipments, POS, brand sentiment, third party). Gone are when marketing decisions were based on tribal knowledge or intuition.
Product Positioning for the Holidays
Look at past campaigns and make decisions based on the data informing how the company performed, what needed to change, or if there’s tangible customer feedback, both good and bad. What are you doing to update the packaging?
We love holiday-themed packaging, it gets people in the mood to shop. Retailers, though, need a lot of time to prepare for end caps and in-store promotions. At the same time, themed packaging is a great way to excite customers and plan when it comes to packaging. Another place to draw from is your content calendar.
There needs to be a point to minimize the insanity that is the holiday shopping season, so all content should be themed and geared toward sales but either serve as entertaining or informative.
Plan Around Holiday Time Frames
If you’re reading this, you should be thinking about the next holiday season. It’s never too early to think about the sales programs you’re trying to create, just like the content.
Many brands start planning at the end of summer but never in October because it’s just too chaotic with Halloween being the most important day of the year for many businesses.
But, whatever form the holidays take, CPGs need to be ready because as online stores grow, there’s no shortage of ideas coming to the table.