The marketing opportunity of Advent calendars

December 2, 2019

Advent calendars have been around for nearly 200 years – starting with the humble lighting of a candle to mark the passing of each day before Christmas, and spiralling in popularity over the years to recent day (when you can buy a pork scratching calendar – I kid you not!).

We all know Christmas is fast approaching when Halloween is over and suddenly our shelves are decked with tinsel and festive lines left, right and centre. So why is it such big business for a brand to offer an Advent calendar?

Brand love, all month long

For consumers, it’s simple. You’re choosing your favourite chocolate brand, your favourite tipple or your favourite beauty brand to enjoy a treat  every day. Marketers, however, are asking consumers to show their love for that brand by choosing it as their treat-filled choice in pride of place in their home for the whole month. It’s much more than a single moment – instead, it’s about having that brand on display for a whole month. Clever stuff.

Sampling opportunity

Advent calendars also offer consumers the opportunity to try products before they buy. The message is not a ‘Buy our face cream, honestly it’s great’ . Instead, it’s a ‘We’ve got lots of great products, but don’t take our word for it – try before you buy!’. Plus who can resist the cute miniatures?

Customers can be put off buying full-sized beauty and hair products before they know if they like them especially if they’ve got a higher price tag, buying the branded Advent calendar can allow trial of a range of products before confidently forking out for the full-size version.  

Portioned indulgence

With the more traditional chocolate calendars, consumers are being targeted with messages angling on counting down the days to Christmas with said brand.

A little piece of chocolate every day acts as a precursor to the upcoming over-indulgent festive season for consumers, with the brand at the forefront of their mind.

After all, we deserve it, don’t we?

What next?

Advent calendars provide a timely marketing opportunity, and we predict that come 2020, there will be even more unusual variants to add to the already-available pork scratchings, chilli sauce and cheese advent calendars we’re seeing so many of. Our favourite so far this year is the PG Tips Cracking Christmas Advent Calendar. Behind each door are two teabags along with some festive cracker trivia for two people to share.

Photo credit: N2O's Social Media Manager, Sophie, who created her own personalised cat Advent calendar - complete with specially-chosen treats!

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