Not Just for Christmas: New Patterns Emerge in the Seasonal Decorations Market, According to New Study from Unity Marketing

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Innovation is the key to success in the market for seasonal decorations. Consumers have added Halloween, Thanksgiving and Easter as major decorating holidays and they are always on the lookout for new ideas to add a seasonal flare to their homes. This study shows marketers and retailers how to meet the needs of their decorations customers, based upon the results of a survey among 1,200+ recent decorations buyers.

'New' is the operative word in holiday decorations, so marketers and retaileres need to create new whole-house concepts that decorators can use to create a mood and an environment for holiday decorating and display.

Where once the seasonal decorations market was largely defined by Christmas -- with perhaps some smaller holidays and occasions thrown in -- today we have a whole new world. Consumers have added Halloween and Thanksgiving as a major decorating holiday, and they appear to be always on the lookout for new ideas for adding a seasonal flare to their homes, spring, summer, fall and winter.

This is according to the Christmas, Halloween and Holiday Decorations Report 2012, the newest report from Unity Marketing detailing the decorations buying behavior of over 1,200 representative survey respondents who purchased decorations in the past 12 months and comparing this data to previous consumer surveys.

“When it comes to the decorations market, customers focus on what’s new, what’s different, what’s distinctive for each season,” says Pam Danziger, president of Unity Marketing and lead researcher for the new study. “In reviewing the market trends from 2004 contained in this report, the market for seasonal decorations is highly volatile. Unlike other consumer goods markets where product sales trends are more or less predictable, the market for seasonal decorations is highly variable, with consumers responding to new decorating ideas and innovative designs. As a result, the dramatic ups and downs that are seen when comparing year-to-year product category sales are to be expected. What is hot one year is just as likely to go cold the next.”

Given the dramatic swings in sales overall, product marketers and retailers need to look beyond the dramatic swings in sales at the product and holiday level and strive to find a strategy for developing their business through innovative new decorating concepts and overall holiday decorating ideas. This new report will help seasonal decorations marketers, manufacturers and retailers find opportunities to connect with their decorations customers,

In it, Pam Danziger, president of Unity Marketing and lead researcher and analyst on the new report, shares key findings for all seasonal decorations manufacturers, marketers, and retailers.

Key Findings Detail the Decorations Landscape

Some of these findings include:

  •     Innovation is key to success in the market for seasonal decorations: One important finding in the new study is the degree to which consumers are attracted to new decorating ideas and trends. That calls for marketers to innovate in new decorative concepts and retailers to present creative new ways to decorate home for the seasonal holidays.

“To satisfy consumer desire for something new and trendy, marketers do not need to introduce new products per se, but focus on whole home decorating strategies,” says Danziger. “They need to offer up new ideas for creating a holiday decorating scheme that works throughout the home, from the front yard, porch, and door to the living room, dining room, kitchen, and den. ‘New’ is the operative word, so marketers and retailers need to work with creative designers and home decorators to develop new overall themes, new whole-house concepts, new decorating ideas that consumers can use to guide them in creating a mood and environment for holiday decorating and display. Product innovation is clearly needed, but marketers and retailers need to start with developing new overall home decorating concepts then work down to the product level, rather than try to build their businesses from the product on up.”

  •     Consumers are expressing more interest in spring and summer decorating: While the major decorating holidays – Christmas and Halloween – still brighten up the landscape in the more muted fall and winter seasons, consumers are expressing more interest in Easter and Fourth of July, important spring and summer holidays.

“This is a real opportunity for marketers, because few consumers have a base of decorations on hand for spring and summer holidays, so this segment could grow quickly,” says Danziger. “But it has to be more than simply offering outdoor light strings in red, white, and blue; consumers want unique and special concepts that capture their imagination for that holiday.”

  •     Natural decorations are important: With the rise in interest in environmentally-friendly products, plants and natural decorations are gaining popularity for both indoor and outdoor decorating. In this case, “green” is more than just a seasonally-appropriate decorating color.
  •     Consumers are turning to the internet for decorating ideas: Where people shop for seasonal decorations is changing dramatically. This most recent report shows that sales of decorations through non-store channels has grown between 2009 and 2011, indicating that consumers are looking beyond their local retail store. “Today, consumers will not be content to buy the same light strands and door decorations that appear each year in mass and discount stores; they are looking for unique decorations, and they will go online to find them.”

Take Action >>> Let the Christmas, Halloween and Holiday Decorations Report 2012 Help You Construct a Unique Approach that Will Bring Customers In

“If there is one lesson we have learned thus far from the weak recovery from the recession, it is that consumers are treating their homes as expressions of their own personal style rather than as investments that must remain neutral to bring the best price when the property is ‘flipped.’ This extends to how they decorate their homes for holidays,” says Danziger. “Our new report shows how consumers are shopping for decorations today, what holidays and occasions call for a bit of extra bling, and what items are grabbing their attention.”

About Pamela N. Danziger and Unity Marketing
Pamela N. Danziger is an internationally recognized expert specializing in consumer insights for marketers targeting the affluent consumer. She is president of Unity Marketing, a marketing consulting firm she founded in 1992. Pam received the Global Luxury Award for top luxury industry achievers presented at the Global Luxury Forum in 2007 by Harper's Bazaar.

Pam gives luxury marketers "All Access" to the mind of the luxury consumer. She uses qualitative and quantitative market research to learn about their brand preferences, shopping habits, and attitudes about their luxury lifestyles, then turns these insights into actionable strategies for marketers to use to reach these high spending consumers.

Follow Pam on Twitter @ http://www.twitter.com/PamDanziger

Pam's latest book is Putting the Luxe Back in Luxury: How new consumer values are redefining the way we market luxury (Paramount Market Publishing, 2011). Her other books include Shopping: Why We Love It and How Retailers Can Create the Ultimate Customer Experience, published by Kaplan Publishing in October 2006; Let Them Eat Cake: Marketing Luxury to the Masses-as well as the Classes, (Dearborn Trade Publishing, $27, hardcover) and Why People Buy Things They Don't Need: Understanding and Predicting Consumer Behavior (Chicago: Dearborn Trade Publishing, 2004).

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