In my recent poll, 68% of you "lounged like Mary with family and friends" on Black Friday. Mary, the one blamed by her sister Martha for lazily sitting at Jesus' feet for story time, may have gotten it right. But that doesn't make the 4% of you who "toiled like Martha for family and friends" feel any better. (Sons of Martha might, however.)
Tied for second were the categories "Other" and "took advantage of the shopping deals."
Speaking of taking advantage of shopping deals, I came across an article at AdAge this morning about new holiday ads focused on me. The National Retail Federation
"recently highlighted J.Crew, which featured a 'Gift Yourself' section on its website, along with the text 'To: You, From: You.' And this week Gap is promoting sleepwear as the perfect gift to give yourself: 'Tuck Yourself In: Dots, pops of color, and soft flannel -- perfectly sized sleepwear just for you. Give (yourself!) the gift of good sleep.'"
|Photo by leapetey|
John Ross, CEO of Shopper Sciences, said, "It looks like retailers across the board widened the draw of their promotional assortment to appeal to a broader audience." (Broader sounds so inclusive, but the only audience added to what used to be a focus on you, is me. So broad, isn't it?) "To the extent that retailers can change their ads, we'd be advising them to do it," he said. "It appears to be something that the shopper is already embracing."
Of course we're embracing it.
What I didn't realize, but what would have been something to celebrate had I known about it, is that "Shoppers have actively tried to be less impulsive and haven't been spending on themselves for some time."
In Mr. Ross's world, this less impulsive bit isn't a point of celebration. It's a problem. It isn't a sign of stewardship or self-control, but a weakness in the system. His aim is to push retailers toward adopting a self-pleasure strategy because it's good for business. Buying for self isn't inherently bad, especially when the price is right, but to employ a self-pleasure strategy in the season most known for charity and altruism can't be good for humanity.