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Horizon Media Study Finds New Group of ‘Holiday Maximalist’ Shoppers to Look Out for This Season: Most Emotionally Invested but Also Most in Need of Help Managing Holiday Stress

November 26, 2019

NEW YORK, Nov. 26, 2019 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Horizon Media, the world’s largest independent media agency, today announced findings of its proprietary annual Holiday study. Using its Finger on the Pulse panel, Horizon surveyed over 775 people to understand to what extent people’s incoming attitudes towards their own belongings impact the way they approach their Holiday shopping.

Though the trend of Minimalism continues to rise with the success of shows like Tidying Up with Marie Kondo and Tiny House Hunters, people are throwing that out the window when it comes to holiday shopping. Horizon identified that 40% of holiday shoppers fall into a group that does just that: Meet the ‘Holiday Maximalists.’ They own things out of enjoyment instead of need, which has a direct impact on how they feel about the holiday season and how they shop for gifts. The Holiday Maximalists are more engaged and passionate about the holiday season, but with that comes the extreme stress of finding the perfect gift and making the most of the holidays. Brands can win with them this season by planning across their whole emotional holiday journey, while avoiding the curse of advertising with rose-colored glasses.

The Holiday Maximalists genuinely love holiday traditions, with 81% of them claiming shopping for the holidays put them in a good mood (vs. 66% of other shoppers), and they are also more appreciative of the Holidays’ ability to help them slow down and connect with friends and family (90% vs. 80% of other shoppers).

Though Holiday Maximalists feel all the positive emotions of the holiday season more strongly than other shoppers including: optimism (66% vs. 46%), inspiration (60% vs. 35%), and excitement (58% vs. 35%), with the joy of shopping comes financial and emotional stress – they are more likely to feel both the pressure to find the perfect gift for everyone (67% vs. 58%), and they are also more likely to feel the negative emotions of the season most strongly: anxiety (30% vs. 16%), stress (29% vs. 19%), disappointment (19% vs. 9%).

Much like their own approach to owning things, Holiday Maximalists fully embrace the consumerism of the holiday season and are 1.5x more likely to spend over $500+ on holiday gifts than other shoppers (61% Holiday Maximalists vs. 41% other shoppers). However, they are more likely to say spending all that money makes them anxious (59% vs. 52%). Deals and online shopping play a key role in helping them get some much-needed relief: 8 in 10 (79%) claim holiday shopping will be easy with the deals offered (vs. 66% other shoppers) and 84% say they like holiday shopping more now that they can do more of it online (vs. 74%).

Holiday Maximalists are more drawn to and influenced by curated lists and social media platforms than other shoppers. Over half of all shoppers rely on Amazon (57%), friends and family (50%) and store sites (41%) as most influential to their Holiday purchases – and that includes Holiday Maximalists. But brands seeking to engage with these more passionate Holiday Maximalists need a careful media strategy covering search, social media and curated gift lists, including: search engine (38% vs. 29%), mail catalogues (23% vs. 10%), curated gift selections (19% vs. 9%), ads or articles in magazines (19% vs. 12%), Facebook (22% vs. 14%), YouTube (16% vs. 9%) and Instagram (14% vs. 8%) in order to reach them where they are going most.

While we may assume that holiday traditions are part of our DNA as Americans, Horizon discovered that people’s incoming predispositions towards their own belongings seem to be a key differentiation in how they feel and behave during the holidays. Brands can reach the more passionate and engaged shoppers – the Holiday Maximalists – by tapping into their varied emotions and working to alleviate the pressures they feel.

Brands should leverage and customize their holiday marketing strategies to hit Holiday Maximalists at each point of their search for gifting ideas with messaging to match their emotions. Inspiring messaging early on is the key to capturing these more engaged holiday shoppers who have higher budgets and stronger commitment to finding the perfect presents. Deal messaging halfway into the season serves not only to increase sales but to emotionally release shoppers from the financial and emotional stress of Holiday shopping.

Brands should emphasize not only the traditions, family time, and positive emotions of the season but also acknowledge that along with all the joys of the season comes a lot of anxiety and stress. Creating antidotes at each touch point that alleviate stress and pressure (gift guides, easy online experiences and returns, curated online ideas and deals, and more) will go a long way.

About Horizon Media Horizon Media, Inc. is the largest independent media agency in the world. The company was founded in 1989, is headquartered in New York, and has offices in Los Angeles and Toronto. With estimated billings of $8.7 billion and over 2,300 employees, Horizon is the second largest U.S. media agency according to COMvergence data.

Recognized as one of the world’s ten most innovative marketing and advertising companies by Fast Company, Horizon Media has been named Media Agency of the Year by MediaPost, Adweek and AdAge and is known for its highly personal approach to client service. Renowned for its culture, Horizon is also consistently named to all the prestigious annual Best Places to Work lists published by Fortune, Forbes, AdAge, Crain’s New York Business and Los Angeles Business Journal; including “Best Workplaces for Diversity,” “Best Workplaces for Women,” and “Best Workplaces for Millennials” honors.

Earning the industry’s highest honor, Bill Koenigsberg, President, CEO and Founder of Horizon Media, was inducted into the American Advertising Federation (AAF) Hall of Fame in 2019.

For further information please contactHorizon Media Stephen Hall(212) 220-1744 shall@horizonmedia.com