Tis the season to be knackered

It’s that time of year when there is too much to do in too little time. I’d like to propose a different approach…

Tis the season to be knackered

Sean Adams

Parachutists have a term – “ground zoom”.

This refers to the point during their long slow descent at which the ground seems to almost accelerate towards them, making the final part of their journey happen very quickly.

That is a bit how I feel about the approach of Xmas.

For many months, the end of the year seems a long way off and then suddenly, usually around mid-October, all hell breaks loose and before we know it we are turning off the computer and wishing our colleagues a happy and safe Xmas.

Why is it that people you haven’t heard from all year also get in touch at this time of year and suggest “..catching up before Xmas”?

And this at the precise time clients are “needing to get that project finished before Xmas” (presumably so it can sit on their desk until they return from holiday in late January).

Throw in an array of social events that eat up further time and stamina, plus the planning and execution of Christmas cards and presents, and it is small wonder that people reach the Xmas break on their last legs.

But consumers are faced with a similar quandary. From mid-October onwards it seems as if they are being increasingly whipped into a frenzy by marketers.

Somehow they are expected to run their own lives while also trying to negotiate their way through the mass of pre-Xmas messages.

Then as soon as that is over, it is time to be assaulted by January sales messages.

It often strikes me just how hard it is for any brand to stand out in that environment? Yet marketers continue to pour their hard won marketing dollars into over-inflated media because they can’t risk not doing so.

Only problem is that most of their competitors are doing exactly the same.

The result? Marketing clutter and consumer indigestion. But what is the alternative?

For 2008, I’d like to propose a different approach.

  • What about avoiding the pre-Xmas noise when everyone is also shouting and making some noise of your own when things are relatively quiet and you therefore have a better chance of standing out?
  • What about marketing around events and times of the year that won’t have all your competitors doing exactly the same?
  • What about catching up with people before the end of March, for instance, rather than trying to fit them in before the end of the year?
  • What about holding a client party in May? or September? or February?
  • What about sending someone a “thinking of you” card in July?
  • Why not spread the goodwill out a bit more and don’t limit it all to Xmas. In fact, why not try to make the season of goodwill last all year round.

Wishing you a very merry Xmas and a happy and prosperous new year.



To read more Sean Adams blogs, click here .



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