After a buoyant 2021 driven largely by revenge spending, the stage is set for this year’s festive season which has already kickstarted with Onam and Ganesh Chaturthi. Brands across categories have started rolling out their festive marketing campaigns, offers and promotions as consumer sentiment remains positive.
Advertising industry executives estimate that there will be a 15 to 20 percent jump in festive advertising spends over 2021. This will largely be driven by television, print and digital platforms.
“Typically second half of the year (H2) is much larger than H1 owing to the festive season that brings in a lot of media money. This year we expect it to be over 20 percent. Fashion, FMCG, automobile and e-commerce categories to drive these spends. There is also certainty among consumers about jobs and the economy which is going to drive purchases,” says a senior media buyer on the condition of anonymity.
Harsha Razdan, partner and head, consumer markets and internet business, KPMG India notes that the festive season will definitely be similar to last year and better than 2020 as well as 2019 in terms of consumer spending.
"I’m yet to analyse the data because 2021 was all about revenge spending having come out of 2020. I’m not sure whether like-to-like is going to be more. It will be interesting to see data from categories such as apparel and electronics,” he notes.
Upbeat consumer sentiment
Almost everything is open now and people have started going out, meeting friends and family, attending functions and celebrating festivals. This would obviously lead to an upswing in the demand for multiple categories including fashion.
TCNS Clothing Co. Ltd, which sells women's apparels and accessories under two brands W and Aurelia, says that it has mounted two big festive campaigns. For W, the campaign ‘Be the Same or Be W’ and Aurelia’s ‘Be Compliment Ready’ featuring Bollywood actor Alia Bhatt respectively, showcases the brand’s 2022 festive collection.
Noting that the retail business is back just like the pre-Covid days, Puneet Sewra, chief marketing officer, TCNS Clothing Co. Ltd says that the company is witnessing a spike in sales at both offline and online channels.
“We are expecting this festive season to be a big one. We are already seeing a surge in the east market where the festivities of Durga Puja have begun, and with other festivities around the corner, a similar trend is expected across other regions too,” he notes.
Sewra says that the company has planned a big 360 degree campaign around both the brands with strategic interventions across all consumer touch points.
“Keeping the audience in mind, the campaigns are digital-first with social media, influencers, OTT leading the plan and cinema, print, OOH and retail creating surround to amplify the reach,” he adds.
Offers, new launches planned
Beauty and wellness e-commerce platform, Nykaa is gearing up to roll out a host of shopping experiences and campaigns starting with Navratri, Diwali, and its annual flagship event 'Pink Friday'. On Nykaa Fashion, the company is set to launch new brands and updated curations with the ‘A Million Nakhras’ campaign.
“We're set to offer shoppers the biggest and most relevant assortment in beauty, fashion, and home, with new and exciting launches. In beauty, categories such as skincare, makeup, hair care, bath and body, and fragrances are expected to be in the spotlight. And in fashion, occasion-wear, party couture, accessories, home decor, and gifting options are expected to be driving the buzz,” says a Nykaa spokesperson.
“Nykaa's Hot Pink Sale, from earlier this year, is a good indicator of the shifting consumer sentiment, where we observed a very positive response to the event with categories like makeup witnessing close to a seven-fold jump,” the spokesperson adds.
Pullbacks by certain categories
While the consumer sentiment seems high, experts also talk about negative global cues and pull backs which cannot be ignored.
Jai Lala, CEO, Zenith, a media agency owned by Publicis Worldwide says that there are pull backs which are happening on two fronts.
According to him there are certain inflationary measures which are happening with commodity pricing etc going up and that is impacting the FMCG players who are seeing a ripple effect of that. This is holding them from spending the kind of money we expected they’d spend around the season.
"Secondly, a lot of VC funding has been restricted. Unlike the beginning of the year or the last year where we saw a lot of new companies putting in a lot of money on advertising and celebrities, we are seeing a little pullback. So, coming back to the festive season, there will definitely be growth in spending if we compare it to the previous months but my personal prediction is that we won't see a boom like last year. However, there is no denying that brands especially in some categories like automobiles who have launches lined up during the season will be spending on impact,” he concludes.
With inputs from Tasmayee Laha Roy