Advent Calendars, or: 25 opportunities to engage and delight

Traditionally, an Advent Calendar helps count down the 25 days until Christmas, usually with a small item or devotional phrase that is hidden behind a door and revealed on each day.

Chocolate brands were quick to recognize the marketing opportunity in this anticipatory behavior – but today, we can find Advent Calendars in almost any category, from food and beverage to toys, beauty and fashion. Advent Calendars help build loyalty as they connect with consumers daily, having the opportunity to delight and surprise them.

Trending Advent Calendars in the USA and the UK: new trends and classic favorites

While top searches include categories such as beauty, chocolate, wine, craft beer and hard seltzer, we saw many brands that managed to break through and star in rising searches (breakout, last 30 days as of Nov. 22, 2021).

There are a few notable differences in searches between the UK and the USA. For example, UK consumers seem to rely more on retailers to offer them best-value calendars – or turn to well-known or “cult” brands. USA consumers searched for the unfamiliar, premium and/or “as seen on Tiktok”. They look more for gaming, coffee, toys and beauty.

The Self-Care & Rituals Opportunity

Our research on the Stress-Free mega-trend includes the insight that people are reclaiming time: they want to extend good experiences, just as they want to cut short any mundane tasks.

Through Advent Calendars, brands get to help consumers enjoy this pre-celebration anticipation, potentially making their connection with the consumer stronger.

It is no wonder then, that Advent Calendars strive to provide a better value for money with merchandise usually worth much more than the cost of the calendar: it’s a marketing opportunity – and a rare one, at that.

What Else Can We Learn from Advent Calendars?

Christmas only comes around once a year – and is celebrated by a third of the population. Consumers are already trying to extend the idea of countdown calendars, to prolongate the celebration of much-anticipated events such as childbirth, marriage or a birthday: consumer-created countdown calendars can be found on C2C platforms such as Etsy, but brands are missing out on the opportunity to enable consumers to personalize a countdown calendar with which to celebrate around the year and regardless of one’s religious views.

Which one is your favorite?

Personally, I prefer whiskey to diamonds any day.


Happy Holidays!

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