It may be only September, but the holiday season will be here before you know it. Start your holiday brand strategy now to find the most success.
Between October to December, brands and retailers have a tight turnaround time. First up is Thanksgiving, then shortly after Halloween. And almost as soon as that’s done, we’re into Black Friday, Cyber Monday, and, of course, Christmas and the holiday season.
Phew! Are you tired yet? It’s a lot to handle in a short time, which is why preparation is best.
Manufacturers can create a better holiday brand strategy in several key ways.
1. Take Stock of Seasonal Inventory Now
Brands that have holiday-specific products will need to make sure that the right inventory is in place at the right time. For instance, a teapot company with a Thanksgiving-themed teapot, Halloween-themed teapot, and Christmas-themed teapot would need to ensure that all three items are in production and stocked at retailers.
We recommend starting this early – you don’t want to be rushing in the middle of the season.
Even if you don’t have holiday-specific merchandise, checking your current inventory levels for the next three months is still a good idea. Sales can increase during these times and retailers are busier. This means they might not put as much focus on keeping evergreen products on shelves.
2. Create Compelling Visual Displays
Along with planning out your inventory needs, it’s also a good idea to think of displays – and display turnovers. How can you position your products best for each holiday – could you do a Thanksgiving tablescape, or a Black Friday mega-sale?
This might also encourage you to think about your products in new ways and find seasonal uses for them you hadn’t considered before. A pack of batteries, for instance, could be needed to work the light in the jack-o-lantern and could also be a great stocking stuffer.
3. Dedicate Holiday Marketing
Signage, social media marketing, newsletters, and more are all important to consider for this season.
You want to let people know what you are offering – and do so early. Co-ordinate with your retailers to make sure that their marketing is accurate and up-to-date with what you want to promote.
4. Plan for Refills
As we mentioned, inventory management is key – but even the best planning can sometimes be off, particularly during a busy period and if retail staff is overworked.
Take control of your brand at retail by scheduling dates to periodically check your inventory. Don’t rely on the retailer to tell you when your product is low – make sure that you are double checking. You might even send someone into the store to do a physical check (phantom inventory can be a big problem).
5. Schedule Check-Ins
Along with sending someone in-store to check inventory, while they’re there it’s a good idea to also check that your displays are set up right, that your products are actually on the shelf, that the prices are correct, and more.
This is important to set up beforehand, particularly if you are stocked nationally. You need to make a plan to get to every store necessary to ensure your products are displayed at their best potential.
Storesupport Canada is a great partner for your holiday brand strategy. We have a national reach and can go into store for you to check your inventory, product displays, prices, and more.
Reach out to us today to set up your holiday schedule. Call 1-877-421-5081 or visit www.storesupport.ca.