What Makes a Trend – The Growth of the Christmas Jumper

Many years ago in the 1980’s, the Christmas jumper was a must have fashion accessory. Along with multi-coloured leggings,  stonewashed jeans and global hypercolor clothing. How do I know this for sure? Because I owned each of the items mentioned above and I was particularly proud of my leggings collection, which I only wish I’d kept as that garish fashion is back in trend.


In the same way, search queries, keywords, TV commercials and music all get recycled. When was the last truly authentic piece of music played? Now the charts is made up from sample tracks, covers of old songs and the same 4 chords just in a different order.

So why does this happen? What influences trends and how can marketers ensure they are planning correctly for the next big thing, even if that big trend is on its second or third round?

What are trends?

Trends can be very heavily manipulated by the media. It just takes a celebrity to wear an item of clothing, which you would never be seen dead in and all of a sudden it is a must have item. Just take David Beckham (Becks) as a prime example. You want to sell products simply get Beckham or even Brooklyn now, to model something to set off a trend. Becks hair styles cement that. There are not many who would wear a Mohican but Becks struts onto the football pitch and all of a sudden everyone wants that hair style.

Brooklyn Beckham Digital Clarity

Christmas trends show the same power one year it’s a Furby the next Buzz Lightyear. Toot-Toot, Lego – Deep Sea Exploration Vessel and Disney Frozen sing-along are whispered to be the trending toys of Christmas 2015, as well as swegways.


Back to the Christmas jumper, which many of us simply wore to keep our nans who knitted them happy for Christmas day, is now a geeky, trendy phenomenon. So much so that if you don’t stock them in your store you might be missing a trick!

So a trend is anything which picks up popularity, something which is viral and shareable – as the oxford dictionary states:

  1. A general direction in which something is developing or going
  2. A Fashion
  3. A topic or subject of many posts on a social media website within a short period of time

How can Google AdWords and Analytics help you execute a trend friendly digital strategy?

When advertisers are creating digital marketing campaigns, one of the useful details we refer to is past search volume data. The challenge with this comes in predicting trends. A product such as a new toy which is not yet on the shelves, or the latest Mobile phone will only begin to get momentum once it is promoted via branding and other marketing channels.

Google does however have some great trending tools. Google Trends can show past trends per location, time or by search terms.

Below is an example of worldwide trends for the term Christmas Jumper and Onesie. It would be fair to say that the trend is likely to increase for Christmas jumpers as we get nearer to December as per last year.

The onesie which equally peaks at Christmas as it makes a good stocking filler, and results in people spending the whole of Christmas day dressed as a giant animal!

Christmas Jumper trends

So, how can this data help us advertisers, well it allows us to plan based on what has occurred before. The onesie has perhaps had its day, although still a popular item 2013 saw the peak. Whereas “wearable tech” is picking up and seems to be the growing trend. I wouldn’t be surprised if this Christmas sees a clear peak in wearables so far.

If you are able to predict and forecast weeks, months and seasons, you can allocate and plan budgets and estimated delivery more effectively.

All trend data sourced from Google Trends

For more information, feel free to contact the team at Digital Clarity today.

Rachel Mepham
With over 15 years’ experience in Digital Marketing, Rachel heads up the team at Digital Clarity. With a deep skill set in the Paid Search, Social Media and Analytics, Rachel is regarded by both clients and peers as one of the most experienced and prolific women in the UK digital space. Her approach and application to digital strategy planning has been used by some of the biggest brands as well as leading advertising and marketing agencies.