How Marketing Saved Christmas

Dec 23, 2013 | Creativity, Holiday, Marketing, Sales

How marketing saved Christmas

There they sat on the counter, week after week, never moving an inch. Customers came and went, barely glancing their way. Their blinding red and green beads “sparkled” in the fluorescent lights, but these Christmas bracelets were a lost cause.

It was my senior year of high school, and I’d spent most of my Christmas break working at a local consignment store. Hiding behind my “cashier smile,” I was ready for the holiday shoppers to fly south for the winter. But sales must go on!

Even with my hints and gestures toward those bracelets during checkouts, they stayed firmly planted on the counter. I couldn’t blame the shoppers—they weren’t exactly high fashion.

Meanwhile, the other side of the store teemed with parents and children huddled around the Webkinz display. Whoever invented those plush animals was a bona fide genius in my book. We couldn’t keep the shelves full!

After a few hours of observing these trends in our sales, an idea struck.

Before opening the store the next day, I decided to hold an experiment. I selected the cutest Webkin I could find and slid a Christmas bracelet over its neck. Presto! A “Christmas collar” was born. After whipping up a sign in Microsoft Word, the makeshift display was ready to go.

The bracelets sold in less than five hours.

I’ve had a lot of jobs since then—graphic designer, secretary, copyeditor, drum instructor, etc. The need for fresh ideas and creative marketing has been present in all of them. This little story has stuck with me for a reason. It reminds me of two things, and I hope you take them to heart with your marketing, too:

1. Find Creative Solutions for Mundane Problems.

The problem might be small, but the solution can still be great. It doesn’t need to be monumental—just creative. Think outside of the box when you need a fresh idea.

2. Know Your Customers.

Observe what they like, love, and hate. Adjust to their tendencies and meet their needs. You might have just the thing to make their day. Build relationships and delight them with deals they’ll love.

Has spontaneous marketing or creativity ever saved the day for your business? Tell us your story in a comment below!

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