The Christmas Creep

November 7, 2012 - 2 minutes read

Christmas advertising seems to find its way on to every possible platform earlier and earlier each year. The process even has its own name in the US; ‘Christmas creep’ refers to retailers exploiting the commercialisation of Christmas by bringing forward their festive sales tactics, but is this premature activity beneficial to brands or do consumers just get bored?



For some, starting Christmas early is the key to avoid over-spending. In what would seems like a contradiction, companies like ‘Park’ have cottoned on to the money making opportunities that thrifty savers can bring them. These companies encourage consumers to start ‘saving’ early by placing orders for items that they can make monthly payments for in the run up to Christmas.


But consumers wishing to save money are most probably not the reason behind festive promotions starting so soon. The Guardian puts last year’s Christmas creep down to economy issues:
“A decade ago, retailers would not start their festive promotions until late October, but this year – with dozens of retail chains on the brink of bankruptcy – selection boxes, mince pies and even advent calendars and Christmas puddings are already on the shelves of supermarkets across the country.” 
But will consumers get bored of Christmas starting early and hold on to their pounds until they truly feel the time is right? Perhaps not. Retailers are fully aware of this looming possibility and so whilst they continue to persuade consumers that they’ll be missing out if they don’t spend early, it’s going to be a tough trend to break.

To that end, we leave you with some interesting facts from Asda’s 4000 strong ‘Mumdex’ panel who were questioned in July about this coming Christmas:


  • 46% are worried about the cost of Christmas
  • 41% have already bought Christmas cards
  • 13% have already bought decorations
  • 22% have already stored away food for December
  • 93% of women suveyed are already stockpiling presents

(statistics source:

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