Many experts regard Valentine's Day as the second-busiest holiday buying season every year. Many an enamored person goes in search of the perfect, unique gift that says "I love you" to their special someone. Cosmetics, jewelry and gadgets are often given as Valentine's Day gifts; but just about any company can come up with a Valentine's Day promotion that's perfectly gift-able.
Since there are so many marketing dollars vying for your customers' attention, you have to be creative to get noticed amidst all of the competitors' commotion. A great offer and well-targeted distribution are essential elements to Valentine's Day marketing success, and so is your ability to stand out from the competition. Try these five Valentine's Day marketing tips to enhance brand recognition and increase sales this year.
Host an event
A Valentine's Day-themed event can draw massive crowds if you can come up with an interesting draw. A Valentine's Day dance could be just the thing to get your products and services in front of couples (and singles). Instead of the traditional Valentine's sale, pair your discounts with a free Valentine's photo (from a professional photographer stationed in-store or through a redeemable voucher).
If you have a retail store, you could also have "perfect gift experts" on-hand to assist shoppers in choosing just the right gift for their loved ones. Promote your event with direct-mail postcards, catalogs, and booklets; and distribute posters, signs, and banners in plenty of time for your customers to plan to make your event.
You could also partner with non-competing businesses whereby your customers receive a discount at their stores and vice versa. Jewelers, restaurants, hotels, resorts, movie theaters, confectioners, opera houses, dinner theaters, carriage rides and other enterprises that cater to couples are good places to start.
Offer custom gift-notes
You can print elegant notepads to pen special custom gift-notes from your customers to their loved ones as part of a comprehensive gift-wrapping service. Many customers prefer to have their purchases gift-wrapped at the store to save time and money, and adding gift notes can sweeten the deal enough to be chosen instead the competition.
Hold a contest
A unique and creative Valentine's Day contest can drum up business and help you glean a bit of free press. Your contest should contain a Valentine's theme and be imaginative enough to be considered interesting for publication. Some ideas include: longest kiss, longest dancing couple (or a dance-off), most creative proposal since the beginning of the year, etc. Make sure you include a way for both participants and bystanders to be engaged in the competition and make the prize worthwhile!
Market early and often
The Christmastime holidays are about friends and family, but Valentine's Day is exclusively about that special someone. You should begin your Valentine's Day marketing right after the New Year and build up hype so your products and offer come to mind as the holiday approaches. You might start with a postcard, print a direct-mail catalog, hang posters and banners in targeted areas, send a special Valentine's Day gift-giving booklet, and then round everything out with another postcard campaign to drive sales. Branding is largely contingent on accessibility and repetition, so double your efforts to double your sales this Valentine's Day!