Every year on February 14th, the United States celebrates the love between couples, friends, and family.
But for many, we aren’t taught about the reason that Valentine’s Day came about. While there are many stories, one of the most consistent tales is the story of St. Valentine.
Where Valentine’s Day Began
Back around 270 A.D., a Roman festival of Lupercalia used to take place. Taking place usually on the 15th of February, it celebrated the arrival of spring and was known for pairing off women with men by lottery.
So why is the 14th celebrated now?
On the 14th of February, around 278 A.D., Rome held the execution of the famous St. Valentine. “According to legend, he wrote a letter on the night before his execution to his jailer’s daughter, whom he had befriended, and signed it, ‘From your Valentine.’”
Two centuries later, Pope Gelasius ordered that the date be changed to February 14th in honor of St. Valentine. This change led to the tradition of exchanging “love messages” or valentines such as he did on his last night before his execution.
Fast forward to the 1700s, the celebration of Valentine’s Day made its way to the United States from Europe when Esther Howard, the daughter of a printer, received a lacey love note from England, which inspired her to mass-produce Valentine’s Day cards.
How Did The Marketing Of Valentine’s Change?
From there, the idea of receiving a card became a tradition people grew accustomed to. The card industry skyrocketed when Hallmark also began to place images of hearts and cupid in front of the public while encouraging them to purchase valentines for those they love.
Year after year the amount spent on this holiday has increased as companies market their goods as the perfect gift for “your someone special”. In 2020, the projected sales in the United States is approximately 27.4 billion dollars; an increase of 6.7 billion from 2019!
But cards and heart-shaped chocolate aren’t the only things that are marketed. Now you can find advertising for Uber when you need a last-minute flower delivered to your person or massages for those who might not be in a relationship. But that doesn’t mean the aisles are filled with pink and red, hearts and flowers, cards and chocolates.
Companies are just becoming more creative. But one thing that will never change is marketing to those who are in love, or crave love, and how it will forever be one of the smartest things a company can do. When you’re in it, you celebrate it. When you’re not, you celebrate how you think it’s overrated. Either way, there is a market for everyone that any company can capitalize on.
When it comes to marketing from a digital aspect, there are a few things that you should and shouldn’t do:
Do Start Early
When you can get your information out before others, there is a better chance that people will see your ads. Plan your Valentine’s Day marketing early so you are prepared for the weeks leading up to it. Whether that means making a calendar so you stay on track or begin messaging your consumers months in advance, there are multiple ways to put you on their mind.
Don’t Only Focus On Singles
It is important to include everyone in your marketing. When you only focus on the couples, you miss out on a huge market of the single people and vice versa. You need to be considerate and think about where your consumer might be at the time they see your ads. Ask yourself, if you were in their position, how would you be viewing the ad? Would you be on your phone or computer? Would you ignore it if it was only including those in a relationship? These are important questions to ask when creating the ads because you want to let everyone be part of the celebration!
Do Share A Positive & Inclusive Message
All Valentine’s Day messaging should be positive and inclusive to all those who want to celebrate it. Let it be known that you want everyone to be happy on February 14th.
Don’t Go Crazy
No one likes it when they see advertisements splattered all over their social media or shopping pages. Keep it simple, keep it clean and make it something flattering to the eye that will draw the customers to your company’s advertised product.
Follow these tips, and you’re sure to market to the right customers!