Christmas Music & Advertising Blitz
I always look forward to the upcoming holiday season. My favorite time of year is Christmas Day, which also happens to be my birthday. But some of the excitement about the Yuletide has been diminished recently as the holiday promotional campaign seems to begin in earnest earlier every year.
I went shopping one early morning this week and heard Christmas music playing in the background. I understand that retailers want to remind their customers that the holiday shopping season is right around the corner, but it's only the second week of November!
On my way home, I tuned into one of my favorite radio stations only to find that the format had been changed to feature non-stop Christmas music. I've spoken with two area radio station managers who confirmed that the holiday music format is a ratings bonanza. But it seems rather odd to hear Christmas music before the first snowfall.
"Black Friday", which is the retail industry's equivalent of a human tsunami, starts even earlier this year. Shoppers used to line up outside their favorite store prior to a 6am opening the day after Thanksgiving. This year, though, some national retailers will open their doors at midnight on Friday. Frankly, I don't think I could start Christmas shopping while still digesting my turkey dinner.
I watch a fair amount of television and there was not a half hour that went by where there wasn't at least one commercial promoting a store's holiday shopping hours and/or special prices on this year's coolest gifts. Likewise, every one the newspapers and magazines I read daily featured ads for this year's best holiday bargains.
I asked a number of friends this week whether they were put off by the Christmas advertising blitz. One hundred percent of the respondents were in agreement that the holiday promotion was a bit over the top and a bit too early for their taste.
I understand why retailers want to get word out about Christmas as early as possible. After all, many retailers make or break their future existence based on the revenue generated in the next six weeks. But I wish the promotional barrage would be put on hold a while longer.
Of course, I always have the option to change the radio dial to stay away from hearing Christmas music until I'm in the holiday spirit. And I can try to avoid the holiday retail displays until I'm ready to start buying gifts. But as the ads and holiday music continue to infiltrate everything I read, see and hear, I am reminded of the one thing that I cannot avoid - becoming another year older.