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The secret to a successful Christmas campaign? Online advent calendars – here’s why

September 7, 2022

Do you remember the excitement you felt as a child opening the door of an advent calendar and getting your hands on the prize behind (more often than not a small chocolate bar)?

Today the advent calendar market has exploded and is no longer a child’s domain. Everything from gin to beauty products are now hiding behind calendar doors.

And customers love them, especially since such advent calendars often offer huge savings on the items inside compared to their individual retail price. It’s a win-win situation that can create huge brand affinity.

So imagine if your marketing could harness the same sense of excitement and anticipation, and as a result help you overcome one of your biggest challenges as a marketer – grabbing consumer attention during peak season. By using gamification techniques (such as online advent calendars) in your peak season marketing campaigns, you can.

And it’s vital you do because while you want to talk to your customers during peak, so does everyone else. Given how much shopping consumers do in the fourth quarter of the year, it’s no surprise that marketing noise suddenly gets deafening for the consumer and it means that you need to deliver something memorable to shine during the all-important golden quarter.

The benefits of the online advent calendar

One of the biggest benefits of the online advent calendar is that you can use it to keep your customers coming back for more, just like the hungry child looking for the chocolate treat behind the advent calendar door each morning.

The time spent with your audience is much longer engagements than traditional digital ads. Our customers see an average of 67 seconds per engagement, and compared to 1.5 seconds of dwell time on a digital ad, this is an extremely valuable experience to provide for your consumer.

As the marketer you can decide on the frequency of your advent calendar – such as daily or weekly. And you can choose the length of the campaign too, whether that’s the full 24 days of a traditional advent calendar or a focus on a more limited run, such as the 12 days of Christmas.

Whichever frequency you choose you will be creating the opportunity for repeated contact between your brand and your customer which means that getting the content and the prizes right is crucial. You can also tailor your campaigns to accomplish whatever KPIs you are aiming for – whether that’s increased footfall, time spent with the brand or sales.

Why the prize is worth winning

We have helped clients create powerful advent calendar campaigns as part of their peak season marketing campaigns, with equally as powerful results.

More than 700K users engaged with Coop’s Advent Calendar game a total of 3.5 million times

The advent calendar offers the chance for repeat engagement with customers. In Coop’s advent calendar campaign 95,000 customers downloaded the Coop app. In total 700,000 customers engaged with the game, playing a total of 3.5 million times – that’s an average of five times each for everyone who played.

Why gamification can open new doors for your business

Such results illustrate just how big an impact advent calendars can have as a part of your Christmas marketing campaign. Making your peak season marketing playable can truly open new doors for your business – boosting awareness, building customer connections and increasing sales as well as building stronger emotional connections with your customers.

And that’s a much more valuable prize than a bar of half-melted chocolate.


advent calendar
Digital Marketing