The toys of summer


With the 2014 Fifa World Cup kicking off on June 12, electrical retailers have a fantastic opportunity to leverage the excitement around the event and turn it into increased sales across their product portfolios.

Not only that, but with Wimbledon taking place during the tournament, and the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games commencing on July 23, we’re heading swiftly towards an accidental summer of sport.

Beyond the traditional football-themed, in-store competitions and promotional prices to attract customers in the lead-up to and during these events, what else can savvy electrical retailers do to increase footfall and ultimately drive sales during this exciting time of sport?

The World Cup is set to be broadcast on terrestrial television, which means that it will be available for everyone to watch. However, the time difference between Brazil and the UK may preclude younger viewers from watching the matches taking place later in the evening. This presents the perfect opportunity for retailers to promote sales of smart TVs and PVRs with catch-up services, so that fans can watch games broadcast late at night in the UK the next day at a more feasible hour. Electrical retailers should be promoting top-of-the-range devices with recording functionality like the Freeview HD + to exploit this golden opportunity.

To add to this, electrical retailers must capitalise on the fact that during the World Cup football fans will be looking to follow their teams on the widest screen possible to make themselves feel like they’re part of the action in Brazil, and create a party atmosphere in their homes.

In order to tap into this market, retailers should be promoting big screen-size television sales as the world gears up for the event. With GfK quoting that 60 per cent of global TV sales are over 40in and 36 per cent of those are smart TVs, there’s an opportunity for all. For the first time ever, certain games throughout the tournament, including the final, will be broadcast in 4K. Therefore, in the coming weeks and months consumers will be more open than ever to purchasing Ultra HD TVs, and it’s paramount that electrical retailers get those people through their doors to make these major purchases.

Here retailers should have in store brand ambassadors offering advice on the best devices and recommending 4K TVs, which globally are expected to top 10 million units in 2014 as forecasted by GfK.

However, these major sporting events are not just about TV sales and retailers shouldn’t underestimate the opportunity for incremental sales within other categories. For example, we can’t forget that the World Cup will also be broadcast on BBC Radio 5 Live, presenting football fans with an alternative way to follow their favourite teams. People around the UK will be listening on the road, in the garden, or simply while pottering around their homes. This presents another fantastic opportunity for electrical retailers to boost sales of high-end DAB digital radios and offer consumers the best listening experience possible supported by D-Love and the efforts of Digital Radio UK.

Finally, it’s important for retailers not to overlook another crucial market – people with absolutely no interest in sport. This sizeable group of consumers will also need to be entertained this summer, and they are the perfect group to target with catch-up devices. These devices offer the perfect opportunity for people to plan their own entertainment and to tune out the football chatter taking place all around them.

With four weeks of world-class football overlayed with Andy Murray’s bid to retain his Wimbledon title, followed rapidly by the Commonwealth Games, the opportunities for brands to get a piece of the action are endless. Historically we’ve seen a sharp increase in TV sales during the past three World Cup tournaments, and we can say with confidence that this is an opportunity not to be overlooked.

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