There is no question that poinsettias are well recognised as the ‘Christmas flower’ with droves of buyers bringing these colourful bracts into their homes throughout the festive season. This year, however, retailers have an unrivalled opportunity to bring poinsettia to the attention of even more customers as the popularity of houseplants continues to skyrocket. Here, the team at Stars for Europe digs a little deeper into this ever-popular trend.
Spend five minutes on Instagram and you are guaranteed to find a houseplant blessing your timeline. Little wonder when you consider that the houseplant hashtag currently has 4.8 million posts to its name, with #urbanjungle enjoying over 5 million, and #poinsettia boasting a modest 327,000 posts. These figures demonstrate just how popular houseplants have become in the world of social media as millennial ‘plant parents’ showcase their greenfingers.
But it’s not just millennials that are adding more greenery to their homes. The latest stats from the Garden Centre Association (GCA) saw 2019 take home the title of ‘Year of the Houseplant’ with houseplants representing the fastest growing category within garden centres across the country and topping the bestsellers charts in five months out of 12. Fast forward to 2020 and these numbers prove to be even more impressive. The RHS reports sales of houseplants are now 60% up year-on-year, with July 2020 seeing a 81.82% increase when compared to the same month in 2019, according to the GCA. This growth has been attributed to the national lockdown, which saw a three million strong ‘garden army’ take up gardening for the first time, which included falling in love with houseplants.
With houseplants front and centre, and the biggest ever engaged audience looking to get their ‘green’ fix during winter, there is no doubt that retailers have a hugely exciting opportunity at their fingertips in the lead up to Christmas. But having a houseplant department, and one that features poinsettia, may not be enough. Instead it is important to ensure that the offering and sales support speaks the language of the customer.
Optimise your social media channels
With social media platforms such as Instagram the preferred playground for plant parents, it makes sense that retailers also optimise this channel to showcase their poinsettia offering in the lead up to Christmas. Create content that inspires potential customers to come and see the product in the flesh, whilst also providing quick hints and tips on plant care. Be sure to include the most searched for terms so that images are easily tracked down, such as #houseplants, #plantparent, #poinsettia and #christmasflower, and make sure content is regularly shared – a single pic might help a few customers find you, but consistent content will work much harder.
Why not add such info at the point of sale? A small display encouraging customers to share their best photos either onsite or of their poinsettia plant at home, is a great way of encouraging conversation with your customers, whilst showcasing your store to other potential customers. Add a personalised hashtag to make searching for snaps even easier.
Create displays that inspire & catch the eye
Retailers will already have stock on order, and within the next few weeks poinsettia plants will start arriving in store. This year create displays that use the same creativity as Christmas décor displays. From ‘snow’ to twinkly lights, make the displays as ‘Instaworthy’ as the plants themselves. In doing so, retailers increase customers sharing the image on their own social channels, and with friends and family, in turn enticing more people into store.
Basic care tips
One of the biggest issues with houseplants is that basic care information is not known or actively followed. This means that many houseplants find themselves in the bin once leaves start wilting. Adding easy to follow care tips at the point of purchase is a great way of actually encouraging sales, without having to rely solely on staff manning the area. A small chalkboard or pin board is all that retailers need to communicate top tips for keeping poinsettias alive long after Santa has visited.
Find out more
To find out more about Stars for Europe, and to access its incredible library of advice, aspirational imagery and content please visit https://www.starsuniteeurope.eu/en/
NOTES TO EDITORS
Stars for Europe
Stars for Europe (SfE) is a marketing initiative founded by European poinsettia breeders Dümmen Orange, Selecta One, Beekenkamp and Syngenta Flowers, supported by MNP Flowers. The initiative began in 2000 with the aim to promote and secure long-term poinsettia sales in Europe. SfE activities are currently taking place in 22 European nations.
Stars for Europe UK press office
Hornby Whitefoot PR
Phone: 07851 610573