One season “woodland friends” were featured on every imaginable product, then there was a frenzy over cacti, only to be replaced by llamas and unicorns. When something is so suddenly pervasive, my sister and I joke that the product must have gotten a new PR agent who promotes its image and orchestrates product placements in all the major stores.

This year, the mythical marketer of the year award goes to those responsible for promoting autumn. Have you noticed that “fall” has become a merchandising frenzy on its own? I’m not talking about Halloween or Thanksgiving, but the actual “It’s Fall Y’all” season in between. Pay attention and you’ll be astonished.

Fall decorations are everywhere. Products include hand towels, pencils, shower curtains, soap, rugs, and all manner of seasonal trimmings. You can have a complete set of fall dishes and almost every food item comes in pumpkin spice flavor to serve on them. Hallmark has a selection of cards wishing greetings just for the season and Walmart is running commercials to encourage “harvest parties.”

Someone identified a gap between summer and Halloween and revved up the merchandising machine to fill it. You may have caught the bug personally and added an extra pumpkin or wreath to your front porch, but has your organization capitalized on the new energy around this season? Add “fall” to your planning cycle for next year: host your donors at a pumpkin patch, add spice flavoring or color to your product, or send sunflower cards instead of Christmas greetings.

There is a marketing bounty waiting for those who harvest it.

About the Author leadership dots by dr. beth triplett

Dr. beth triplett is the owner of leadership dots, offering coaching, training and consulting for new supervisors. She also shares daily lessons on her leadershipdots blog. Her work is based on the leadership dots philosophy that change happens through the intentional connecting of small steps in the short term to the big picture in the long term.

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