Using Holiday Trends To Schedule Ad Campaigns

Every holiday comes with its own traditions and methods of celebration. Whether it be Fourth of July cookouts, Halloween trick-or-treating, Christmas gifts or Valentine’s Day flowers, each has its own set of festivities and a culture around it that strongly influences how people elect to spend it.

Given the commercialization surrounding the winter holiday season, this is generally a very tempting time for advertisers. With so much consumer interest in procuring the perfect holiday gift, it is little wonder that the season drums up a lot of advertising interest.

But, what of other holidays sprinkled throughout the year? Many of them also have commercial aspects that could be a marketing draw: costumes for Halloween, chocolate and flowers for Valentine’s Day, and travel — for many holidays — to bring people together to celebrate. But, are marketers currently capitalizing on these opportunities?

Optimal Times For Ad Campaigns

Examining key performance indicators around the holidays can provide marketers and advertisers with insight about the optimal times to focus your ad campaigns. With the Easter holiday so recently past, I took the opportunity to examine whether the type of holiday in question has an impact on KPIs.

Easter may not be the biggest or most hyped of holidays, but the plethora of pastel and candy sales surrounding it indicate that it is still a time when many people celebrate — and make purchases.

To quantify this, Chitika Insights took a look at the days leading up to and immediately following the March 31 holiday, from March 14 to April 1. Specifically, this study analysed Thursday through Monday of each week, looking at samples of tens of millions of online ad impressions across the Chitika Advertising Network.

Easter Holiday CTR Trend

The data used in this study is plotted as an index where the highest value of a day’s CTR is set at “1,” and all other values are plotted as percentages thereof. See the graph below for details.


Interestingly, the Easter period showed no significant change in user CTR compared to prior weeks. CTR does change by day of the week (and tends to be higher on weekends, typically); however, the shape of the trend for Easter week does not appear to be very different than the shape of the trend observed in prior weeks — implying that Easter did not greatly impact user CTR.

In comparison to other holidays, Easter has relatively little marketing surrounding it that would merit strong advertiser focus. There is commercialization of Easter, to be sure, but its main thrust of chocolates and candy is fairly low-end — the type of goods that can easily be obtained at any grocery or drugstore.

Holiday Trends Help Focus Your Advertising Efforts

In contrast, holidays like Christmas and Valentine’s Day have relatively high-end goods associated with them: more expensive presents, luxury chocolates, jewelry, etc. Easter, on the other hand, is not marketed as a holiday where luxury goods are a traditional or necessary part of the celebration; and as such, people have fewer online shopping needs associated with the holiday.

Keeping holiday trends in mind can help marketers decide where to focus their efforts. Given the relatively low commercialization around holidays like Easter, there may not be much incentive for marketers to target them.

Even so, worthwhile opportunities may still exist in certain verticals, such as travel deals to bring family and friends together for the holidays. Marketers would do well to focus their campaigns and advertising efforts across the entire spectrum of holidays, keeping in mind which ones are most relevant to their industry.

Opinions expressed in the article are those of the guest author and not necessarily Marketing Land.

Related Topics: Analytics | Analytics & Marketing Column | Channel: Analytics


About The Author: is a Data Solutions Engineer at Chitika and a lead author for reports by Chitika Insights, the research arm of the online ad service. After graduating with a B.A. in Business Administration from Ithaca College, Gabe has been pursuing his passion for technology by researching and analyzing new and emerging trends in the online world.

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