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WSU Newsline: Will economy lead to a blue holiday for retailers?
Monday, November 10, 2008 11:00 AM

The scripts are available for printing and for sound bite identification.

Go to http://www.wichita.edu/newsline to get the current Wichita State University Newsline. If you cannot access the Newsline at the Web address above, contact Joe Kleinsasser at (316) 978-3013 or joe.kleinsasser@wichita.edu. Newsline cuts may be edited to suit your needs.

If you have additional questions for Cindy Claycomb after listening to the WSU Newsline, please contact her at (316) 978-6938 or cindy.claycomb@wichita.edu.

Background:
With the economy languishing and fears about the future on the increase, will the holiday shopping season be sour for retailers? Cindy Claycomb, a marketing expert at Wichita State University, looks at strategies likely to be employed by retailers and the approach consumers are likely to take.

Voice wrap:

Announcer: With an economy that's less than robust, U.S. consumers may not feel particularly jolly heading into the holiday shopping season this year. As a result, retailers may choose to take a more aggressive approach to lure shoppers into their stores. Cindy Claycomb, a marketing expert at Wichita State University, explains.

Claycomb: "We can expect retailers to offer price inducements and discounts that are bigger and earlier, and more often than we've seen in the past, and they'll use targeted promotions to draw people into stores."

Announcer: Claycomb says the early sales and promotions could be good for retailers as people are drawn into the stores to shop, but it may make it more difficult for retailers in future years as customers come to expect and wait for sales. This is Joe Kleinsasser at Wichita State University.

Sound bite #1
Claycomb says retailers should expect flat to small increases in holiday spending. The sound bite is 10 seconds and the outcue is "and value."

Claycomb: "Retailers should expect flat to small increases in overall holiday spending, and credit card spending will probably mirror this. Customers will be looking for deals and value."

Sound bite #2
Claycomb explains why price inducements earlier in the holiday shopping season may be problematic for retailers in the future. The sound bite is 9 seconds and the outcue is "wait for sales."

Claycomb: "This could be good for retailers as people are drawn into the stores to shop, but it could be bad as customers come to expect and wait for sales."

Sound bite #3
Claycomb says consumers will look early for sales and bargain hunting. The sound bite is 12 seconds and the outcue is "for themselves even."

Claycomb: "Consumer approaches to spending this holiday season will be bargain hunting. They'll start shopping early to look for sales, and they'll be looking for deals and values and gifts and nongift purchases for themselves even."

Sound bite #4
Claycomb says credit card spending will largely remain flat. The sound bite is 8 seconds and the outcue is "in the past."
Claycomb: "Credit card spending will probably also remain flat to small increases. People will perhaps take on less debt than they have in the past."

Sound bite #5
Claycomb says even in a down economy, people will continue to spend money on necessities. The sound bite is 15 seconds and the outcue is "to purchase online."

Claycomb: "Even if the economy is down, people will still spend, particularly on necessities, but not necessarily on nice-to-haves. And online spending could be popular because of easy price comparisons and research, and free shipping offers might induce customers to purchase online."

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Contact: Cindy Claycomb, (316) 978-6938 or cindy.claycomb@wichita.edu.