It’s the most wonderful time of the year. And that means it’s time to pull out all the best influencer marketing tips and tricks for holiday shoppers. We’ve compiled seven holiday insights to help your campaigns succeed this holiday season.
Whether you already have a holiday campaign in the works (look at you, planning ahead), or you’re hoping to whip one up in the next few weeks, these holiday insights can help. These insights will help you build strategies stronger than age-old holiday traditions. Our goal here at The Shelf is to warm your marketing hearts with helpful info that will make your holiday campaigns sing. With holiday insights this good, even the carollers will be jealous.
So let’s get into it. These holiday insights will help you craft campaigns that make your bosses jolly. Deck the halls with deals. Express gratitude for hitting all your goals. And become enwreathed in impressive ROI. Grab some cookies and milk because it’s time to dig into the secrets of the season.
1. Early Birds Get Deals, Not Worms
The best time to start thinking about your holiday campaigns was last month. Many shoppers are already working through their lists. And I’m not talking Naughty and Nice. They’re buying gifts, travel, and decorations. And they’re starting their shopping early.
A whopping 92 percent of Americans are planning to celebrate one or more winter holidays this year. And 95 percent of consumers plan to make a holiday-related purchase this season.
With so much shopping to be done, deals take precedence. Shopping early helps consumers stretch their holiday budgets over several months and snap up deals as they arise. This year, 46 percent of shoppers planned to start their holiday spending earlier than last year. For 41 percent of shoppers, that meant starting their holiday shopping before October. And even if they’re not yet making purchases, 96 percent of holiday shoppers are looking for gift inspo in October and November.
While it may be a little late to capitalize on the early shopping trend this year, it’s good info to put in your back pocket for 2024. Holiday shopping seems to start earlier and earlier every year. And it’s a trend we don’t see stopping anytime soon. Nearly half (48 percent) of high shoppers were set to start shopping before the end of October. So if you haven’t started advertising your winter holiday sales, start now.
2. Think Digital
It’s 2023, and online shopping is alive and well — especially for the holidays. 58 percent of shoppers plan to do their holiday shopping online this year. That makes it the most popular shopping destination for the season. Department stores take second place with 49 percent of shoppers opting for them. Discount stores follow close behind with 48 percent shopping there.
Shoppers are logging online for good reason. That’s where the deals are! Or at least, it’s an easy place to discover deals and strike at the right time. 85 percent of those shopping online have several tabs open at once waiting for holiday sales to begin. Tech-savvy shoppers know how to use online shopping to their advantage to get the most bang for their buck.
And they’re not just using the internet to make purchases. Holiday shoppers are looking online for gift inspiration. In fact, 17 percent of shoppers have reported using generative AI for purchase inspiration. 45 percent say they get gift inspiration from retail websites and apps. And 13 percent get their ideas from store emails.
For those shopping online, 70 percent forgo the desktop in favor of mobile. That number is even higher for Gen Z, 85 percent of whom report using their mobile device for online shopping. That’s great for your influencer marketing campaigns. Focus on creating thumb-stopping content that will encourage mobile shoppers to buy.
3. Authenticity Should Not Be Forgot
Cue “Auld Lang Syne.” Authenticity is our old friend in the influencer marketing world. She’s the one who brings followers and influencers together. And the holidays are her time to shine. Authenticity moves the needle, especially this time of year.
The holidays are all about coming together. Celebrating the year we’ve had and the one to come. People are feeling the spirit of gratitude and giving in equal turns. There’s a lot of heart wrapped up in people’s purchasing this time of year. And that means marketing has to ring true and authentic or it will fall to the wayside.
Influencer campaigns are a great way to infuse more authenticity into your brand this time of year. Remember the best influencer marketing is laid on a foundation of trust. Find influencers who have earned the trust of their following. And partner with influencers who trust your brand and who you trust, of course!
4. Get Merry on Social Media
One of our most tried and true holiday insights is that social media drives decision-making for the holiday season. This is great news if you’re planning to run a holiday influencer marketing campaign.
Shoppers want to see UGC of products they’re interested in. Half of holiday shoppers say UGC makes them more likely to buy. And half of Gen Z says social media is the most relevant channel for ads to reach them. So whether you’re running paid ads or a UGC campaign, you’ve got a good chance of reaching holiday shoppers.
If your target demo includes millennial women, you’re in even more luck. A staggering 81 percent say social media is the best way for brands to reach them. So roll out those holiday campaigns!
When it comes to inspiration, 18 percent of shoppers say they get holiday inspo from social media ads. And 7 percent say their holiday inspo comes directly from influencer recommendations.
5. Shoppers Go Gaga for Gifting
It’s the season of giving and gifting. 69 percent of shoppers say gifts for others are the first thing they buy for the holiday season. This year, shoppers expect to spend an average of $620 on gifts alone. So what gifts do our loved ones really want to receive?
The top gifts consumers want to receive in 2023 are:
- 55 percent want gift cards
- 49 percent want clothing or accessories
- 28 percent want books, video games, or other media
- 25 percent want personal care or beauty items
While it’s a generous time of year, shoppers are tempted to spend on themselves as well. In fact, 58 percent of shoppers are tempted to buy gifts for themselves while holiday shopping. Don’t underestimate your consumers’ tendency toward self-gifting.
If your brand is more focused on services or experiences rather than physical products, don’t fret. There’s still a place for you to make sales this holiday season. In fact, 23 percent of shoppers plan to gift an experience this year. Gifts come in all shapes, sizes, and price points. It’s up to you to figure out how your brand fits into the gifting economy.
6. Keep Inflation Top-of-Mind
Consumers are feeling the effects of inflation this year, with shoppers expecting to spend 14 percent more this year than last thanks to rising prices alone. Hunting for deals is a priority for many this year to offset the effects of inflation. 62 percent of holiday shoppers say deals and promotions are more important to them this year than last year. And 66 percent of shoppers are planning to participate in the Black Friday / Cyber Monday deals. This is up from 49 percent in 2022. So savings are top-of-mind.
Shoppers are also intending to buy fewer gifts. In 2022, the average shopper intended to purchase nine gifts. This year, the average is down to eight. But don’t fret. This isn’t all bad news for your brand.
Holiday shopping is important to consumers. So much so, they’re willing to cut costs in other areas to make sure they have enough for the holiday season. 27 percent are buying less for themselves, and 36 percent are cutting back in other areas to cover the cost of holiday spending.
7. Get to Know How Gen Z Holidays
This year’s youngest demographic of shoppers (ages 18 to 29) is gearing up for some serious spending. But their shopping habits aren’t always in step with shoppers at large. Overall, Gen Z is the most likely to go online for their holiday shopping. And the most eager to turn to social media for inspo and purchasing. They’re planning to spend more on holiday shopping than in previous years. And hunting for the best deals and payment plan options.
Check out this infographic with all the juiciest holiday insights on Gen Z shoppers.
That’s a Wrap on Our 2023 Holiday Insights
It’s the season of giving, and these holiday insights are our gift to you. Hungry for more? Check out our 2023 Holiday Spending & Trends infographic. It gets into the nitty-gritty details you need to make your Winter Holiday campaign sing fa la la la all the way to the bank.
We hope this post taught you something that will inform your holiday influencer marketing campaign strategy. Whether you’ve been running holiday campaigns for years or it’s your first time marketing during the jolly season, we’ve got your back. Trends are always changing, but our love for all things influencer marketing remains the same.
Still not sure how these holiday insights fit into your upcoming campaign? No worries! We’ve got your back. Schedule a strategy call with us today, and one of our experts will guide you with the accuracy of whatever GPS Santa uses on his sleigh. You know what we mean. We know our stuff. And we’d love nothing more than to share our knowledge with you.
Happy holidays and merry marketing!
About This Author
Ariana Newhouse | B2B Writer
I am a freelance writer and comedian based in Los Angeles. While making people laugh is my jam, it’s not always the company brand. So, I strive to make people feel something. My writing philosophy is collaborative, empathetic, and humanistic. At the end of the day, no matter the message, there are real people on both ends of the process.