Christmas in July: A Marketer’s Information to Escapism Campaigns
Everyone knows – or should know – that the role of good marketing is to sell you a state of mind or transformation rather than a product or service itself.
And what is one of the most desirable states of mind for many people right now?
But the transit piña coladas ran out and we've all been trapped in the rain for a long time. And all ads about tropical vacations turn off a little differently when we are not supposed to be traveling.
Some marketers are therefore taking a different approach to creating an escape this summer by looking at the holiday season.
Christmas in July was widespread last month, and to be honest, many of us wished we had jumped on board too. Because, unlike in previous years, the use of Christmas in July for a marketing piece in 2020 reads less like an overplayed cliché than a nostalgic look back at the time when things felt "normal".
Take Hallmark, for example.
The Hallmark channel knows their market well and they know how passionate their fans are for Hallmark Christmas films. These films are a comfort zone – an emotionally weighted blanket for your audience. They are predictable and warm and blurry: everything that was painfully missing this year.
It therefore makes perfect sense for the broadcaster to launch a Christmas campaign in July to increase visitor numbers and encourage positive engagement with its customers.
But what about the other brands?
What does a $ 2-$ sale of Burger King have to do with escape and blurred feelings?
Check out the comments in this post.
Burger King meets a pain point: It just so happens that the pain point simply exists in the present.
This is the trick in escapism campaigns. You need to find out what the current state is, when it is so painful to be in, and then find a good "escape" to shape your sale or content. When done correctly, it works incredibly well. But you have to find the right way out.
What works so well with the Christmas campaigns in July is that they have found the perfect alternative to the present.
Christmas is all about togetherness: gathering friends and family to celebrate the season. And in today's climate, it is not safe to congregate, and so many people are isolated or separated from their loved ones.
Even if you only think of Christmas, this can create an escape for many. It's a comforting break from this year's chaos.
But remember, escapism campaigns are not about solutions. Your goal is to put your customers in a different emotional state instead of solving their real problem.
It's the difference between selling Christmas baked goods and selling video chat software.
The latter solves the physical problem of isolation, while the former takes the customer back to the "good times" and simply makes him feel better.
There is absolutely a place for both types of campaigns. However, it is important to understand the differences so that you know when to use one or the other.
This choice really depends on what you are actually selling. Providing a solution worked well for the portal ad because it could actually do something about the problem. While the Easy Tiger ad never had a chance to "solve the problem," they leaned into the escape angle.
The world's problems currently feel insurmountable. Trying to target your messages to these issues is often just too extensive to make an impact.
For this reason, the copy of advertisements for every insurance company about "standing together in the face of these difficult times" is stalling. They do not solve anything and do not take a real position and do not give their audience any escape. They only remind them of the bad things that are happening.
And that's just not enough.
Escapism campaigns can also be a solution to reduce feed noise. Escapism inherently breaks expectations and often looks and feels different from all other ads and posts (or they should … if your escape looks like any other Instagram post, it's not really an escape … ).
For example, this regular ad for a bidet does not have the weight to have an impact when so much else is competing for attention, time and money.
However, if you use an escapism twist and advertise "Christmas bundles" with the message "Come to the Spirit", you have changed the emotional state of your audience.
This ad is not just a break from everything else in your feed, i.e. H. Stopping the scroll, but also picks up the viewer and lets him fall straight into the Christmas spirit.
All of these Christmas campaigns in July are about emotional change. The ads themselves – creative, copied, and everything – are an escape from the bad news that surrounds them by leaning on a perfectly curated alternative.
So if you want to create your own escapism campaigns, remember to choose an escape that perfectly matches the current emotional state of your audience.
Oh, and while we're dealing with Christmas ads, I want to remind you that you should probably start your holiday campaigns right now. You have less than 6 months to make the perfect sale. So don't leave him until the last minute.