2 Unique Datapoints for 2024 Fall and Holiday Planning

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2024 holiday marketing strategy guide

2024 has two very unique data sets that will impact your Q4 strategies and holiday sales.  Whether you’re a physical retailer, ecommerce store, or a publisher, these can be intertwined into your marketing plans to help shift if things are not looking right, and most important, plan ahead.

  • Days between Thanksgiving and Christmas and the day of the week
  • The presidential election

Since most of us are holiday planning shortly after the 4th of July, here’s what we’re considering and thinking with clients.


There’s less than 4 weeks between Thanksgiving and Christmas compared to the normal 4 and 5, Hannukah starts on Christmas this year so messaging should be altered, Christmas is on a Wednesday so last minute retail gifts may be harder to push without planning ahead.  Clearing inventory likely needs to start sooner this year.  The election has extra consumer recovery days too.

Thanksgiving to Christmas

Shorter shopping periods normally mean larger boosts of sales earlier with steady demand compared to a burst after Black Friday/Cyber Monday weekends, then a lag and it picks back up.  Most years have four to five weeks to launch campaigns, this year we have less than 4.

Another outlier is when Christmas occurs on a Monday vs. a Wednesday.  Mondays and Tuesdays give shoppers a last chance to find gifts over the weekend at retail stores.  Holiday work weeks may mean the last thing on a person’s mind after work is going to a retail store, so they order a gift card to save time and stress on last minute gifts or use next day shipping if things are in stock online.

Pro-tip: Keep product and datafeeds up-to-date with retailers, affiliates, and in Google Merchant center for last minute shoppers looking to order online and pick up in store fast for last minute gifts.

Keep in mind that 2020 was the pandemic in addition to an election year so the similarity in weeks between Thanksgiving and Christmas is likely not equal as buying behaviors are not the same now and then.  This is why you may want to compare holiday marketing successes to other similar years in length and days of the week when planning your promotions.

With the correct data you can work to maximize your campaign effectiveness based on time, the mount of promotions that can occur, emotional landscapes, and opportunities to shop in person vs. a gift card online.  Here’s a chart to help.

Year Thanksgiving Days in Between Weeks in Between Day of the Week
2024 11/28 27 3.86 Wednesday
2023 11/23 32 4.57 Monday
2022 11/24 31 4.43 Sunday
2021 11/25 30 4.29 Saturday
2020 11/26 29 4.14 Friday
2019 11/28 27 3.86 Wednesday
2018 11/22 33 4.71 Thursday

And there’s more outliers, Diwali which is a shopping holiday is always early, but Hannukah changes.  Some years it is right around Thanksgiving.  This year it starts on Christmas and ends in January.  That means you’ll want to run your Hannukah campaigns with Christmas side by side.  Kwanzaa remains the same time each year.

This year is a short year week and time wise, so you may want to keep promos strong early on because there’s no lag time in between or room to make up sales towards the end.

Customer support should be ready for the rush without the normal break.  Logistics should plan for moving “excess”, “last years”, or non-renewing product sooner rather than closer to the end of the shopping season.

Gen Z has some spending power now that they’re reaching 27 years old.  Test your SMS opt-ins and begin segmenting them out of email if your data shows they’re more responsive on SMS.  And you’ll be able to reach them on their preferred platforms vs. Gen X, millennials, etc… making marketing messaging a lot easier!

Hey Gen X, I didn’t forget you!

Presidential Election

No matter which of the two political parties wins, your audience will be likely be impacted.  The winning party will be in celebration mode, and the losing party may feel depression and be less motivated to celebrate or shop.  Election day is 24 days before Black Friday vs. the 22 from the 2020 election, and the 19 in 2016.

The good news is that there is a bit more breathing room for the results to sink in.  No matter who wins, a significant portion of the population will be upset or happy.  The good news is elections mean data to help you modify messaging based on data and not assumptions.

Election results give you voting behaviors by:

  • Zip codes
  • Counties
  • Gender
  • Age range
  • Education level (if available)

Important Part: Export the top zip codes and counties your customers are in for this next step, and find the top ones that shop with you by volume and value over the holidays.

By using voting habits of the zip codes and counties above and comparing it to where the largest portions of your customers live, you’ll have an idea if upbeat messaging may be better than consoling and comforting ads.  America is very purple, not just red and blue.  Election years give you incredible datapoints for your marketing, this is the perfect opportunity to make the most of a very short shopping season.

I rarely make these posts public.  They go out in private emails to our client base, hourly consulting gigs, and some perspective and past clients.  A lot of people have been hurting in the ecommerce, service, and publishing space, so posting this publicly is my way to give back.  And this information impacts all marketing divisions from promotions, lifecycle, affiliate, search, and operations.

If you found this post helpful or interesting, sharing the post with colleagues or on social media would be appreciated.  Thank you everyone and have a happy 4th of July if you’re celebrating.

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