It’s always good to watch what retailers are doing when you’re making your own plans for caseload management and communication.
That’s why this information caught my attention when Lisa Robertson (our Client Experience Leader) sent this to me. It’s an article entitled “Retailers Are Adapting.” In that article are these important points:

  • Holiday spending accounts for 20% of U.S. retail sales and has increased every year since 2002… except 2008.
  • With the pandemic, 2020 spending could take a dip, especially without additional stimulus checks or padded unemployment benefits. But, with less travel and dining out, it could also go up.
  • Either way, retailers aren’t waiting until Black Friday to find out. On October 10, more than two dozen are reportedly participating in a new holiday discount event mirroring Alibaba’s Singles’ Day in China. Home Depot, Macy’s, Walmart, Target, and American Eagle are moving their holiday seasons up. And Amazon Prime Day, typically held in the summer, is reportedly rescheduled for Oct. 26. Starting early helps spread out crowds and process orders before holiday shipping surcharges take effect in November. But companies are still bulking up for the busy season: UPS and FedEx are hiring a combined 170,000 seasonal workers; Amazon said yesterday it’s hiring 100,000 full and part-time employees.

So here’s the point. If retail and others are bumping up the “Holiday Season,” all of our calendars are going to start spinning faster, too. Essentially, they’re trying to start the holiday shopping season by/on Oct 10.
Added to that is the election, which will create a lot of noise and distraction. And that event is likely to “go longer” that it normally does.
All of this means that you need to start now in preparing for your year-end activities with your caseload donors. (See Jeff’s recent post on this subject, too.) Make sure you’ve carefully planned all your touchpoints, your asks, any collateral pieces you’re going to mail, not to mention addressing greeting card envelopes and preparing letter templates etc.
The next three months (Oct-Dec) will spin faster and be fuller than ever before. Get ready.