Why the heck am I writing this blog from the office anyway?
It’s summer, after all, and word on the street is that we tend to work less and vacation more during these dog days. So in all fairness to ensuring my research is thorough and absolutely vetted, it’s time to hit the road on a quest to discover: Do our buying habits really change during the summer? If so, what drives that spending?
WHY WE BUY
It should come as no surprise that our buying habits change with the seasons. Certainly, we buy different things to fit different seasons. Think suits and salads in the summer, soup and sweaters in the winter.
But in the summer, our overall spending goes up, just like the temps. Why? According to a study reported on by Psychology Today, the sunny days and higher temps associated with summer make us feel more upbeat and positive, and it becomes easier for us to part with our cash instead of saving it for the proverbial rainy (or colder) day.
WHAT WE'RE BUYING
Because we’re busy planning our getaways—road trips, beach sojourns, wedding weekends and the like—we’re also buying all that stuff for all our trips and special events, like airline tickets, apparel, food, entertainment and fuel. It’s a fair chunk of change too, with an average American family shelling out about $1,600 for a vacation, according to a Money Magazine survey.
Energy also takes up a good portion of our summer spending. We’re paying higher electricity bills, and gas prices also tend to increase with the summer driving season, as does spending on cars, RVs and boats.
Then there’s the kids—and the summer camps. People will shell out, on average, about $300 a week on day camps; $500-$1,000 for specialty camps; and about $700 for weekly overnight camps, says the American Camp Association. Figure in more than one kid in more than one camp and that cost easily and quickly reaches into the thousands.
(Side note: I’m fairly certain that if we, here in the office, all threw in what we’ve spent on camps into a pot we’d solve the federal deficit. Not a hundred percent maybe, but close. And our kids could rule the country then.)
So, with all that spending and frolicking about town, how can your brand possibly keep up? Here, three big-thinking strategies that help keep your brand connected and top of mind, wherever your consumer may land this summer.
Think cookouts, patio parties, carnivals, concerts. You want people, wherever they are, to engage with you by being easily accessible, 24/7, and that means being mobile. Your website should be mobile-friendly, and keep it and your social media easy to navigate, continually updated and refreshed. Stay “out there” with relevant, interesting and useful information.
Your consumer is out and about. Meet them where they are. Connect your brand with an event by offering an experience with takeaways (both emotional and tangible) that build affinity to your brand and last well into the next summer. And make it personal whenever you can. That means each and every brand representative, at each and every touchpoint, must reflect your brand in a positive, engaging manner.
TIE IN THE FUN
How can you connect your brand to the fun and go of summer? Speak to their mindset in messaging in print ads, mobile and digital spheres, or special summer events, like a rooftop party, cookouts or giveaways. The options are many but above all, stay authentic to your brand. If you force a connection, it’ll come off as hokey.
Or better yet, call us at Hemline. We’ll make sure you’re one hot trend this season.