Successful brands focus on customer experience.
Anyone who has ever shopped the day after Halloween (and sometimes before, egads) knows that this cool logic goes out the window for two months every year.
In the pre-Christmas panic to make the numbers, many retailers foist Christmas on their customers in a very undignified, and un-seasonal, manner several months before the holiday.
Which brings us to Shoppers Drug Mart.
As a customer, I can tell you that hearing Christmas carols piping through store speakers on November 1st is a profoundly grating experience that turns me into the ultimate Scrooge. I have ranted about this in the past (albeit it in rhyming couplets!).
Lo and behold, other Shoppers customers agree. Thousands of them, according to their Facebook page.
Which is why Shoppers has bowed to public pressure and killed Jingle Bells and Good King Wenceslas until later in the year. Bravo.
Even though I enjoy, in a sporting way, shouting “Merry Christmas!” to the cashiers as I enter and leave in early November, my sense of the season is always somewhat diminished.
The Brand Interventionist Recommends
Listening to your customers when they speak to you. This exercise alone should be screaming ROI OF SOCIAL MEDIA to Shoppers – and any other retail business that is paying attention.
Be proactive in asking for your customers’ opinions. Don’t sit back and wait to hear they hate something you’re doing. Use your social channels to seek regular feedback. Thar’s gold in them thar comments! (According to Shoppers, they had “no idea” Christmas music was an issue for their customers two months in advance of the holiday. You are right to ask how the effin hell that’s possible.)
To find out the appropriate time to baste their customers with Christmas, retail stores should put a up poll like this one on their Facebook pages. They get great intel, which they can use to improve customer experience, and they show they care about that. Boom.