How to plan your advertising strategy to maximise sales for Valentine's Day

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Valentine's Day is fast approaching - is your paid search strategy ready to go? Sarah Clarke shares the crucial steps to avoid a broken heart this February.

How to plan your advertising strategy to maximise sales for Valentine's Day

Valentine's Day is celebrated differently around the world, but a day that celebrates love and commitment is something that most cultures engage with. Generally, over the years, Valentine's Day has become more and more popular, with both searches and sales increasing along with this popularity. This also means that more and more brands are sharing Valentine's Day messaging and products, bringing the question - how can you help your brand stand out?

It isn’t only advertisers who’ve upped their Valentine's Day activity – consumers are also engaging in Valentine's Day more, buying gifts for partners, friends and family, with many individuals starting to look for these products in mid-January, up until February.

With the opportunity within digital paid media to target people based on their relationship status, as well as targeting terms related to Valentine's Day, there is a real opportunity for advertisers to take advantage of.

1.      Plan your approach based on the timeframe

Consumers start thinking about Valentine's Day during the middle of January, whilst starting to shop for gifts from the end of January. During this time, they initially want to be reminded of Valentine's Day along with your brand, before then being shown product-specific messaging. This means that when you are planning your digital marketing, you want to first focus your energy on branding, raising the awareness of your brand and aiming to match with people who are generally looking for gift ideas.

As we move to a week before Valentine's Day, the focus needs to be on specifics, targeting people who are shopping for gifts and cards and have less time to consider their gifting options. The week of Valentine's Day should all be around the opportunity for last minute purchases, or gifts that don’t require posting but will still make for some happy couples when the 14th comes around!

2.      Think about product availability and links

When many advertisers and brands think of Valentine's Day, they think of hearts and love, which might not align with their product or service. If you are an advertiser who sells these products then, fortunately for you, Valentine's Day is a natural fit to this! However, for brands that don’t sell these products, it doesn’t necessarily mean you can’t take advantage of the Valentine's Day trend.

Consumers can choose to gift anything on Valentine's Day, so having a product which can naturally and easily be gifted for any occasion provides an opportunity to talk about this in a Valentine's Day context. Something as simple as updating the ad copy across PPC to talk about the products alongside gifting can allow you to take advantage of the increased search traffic. An extra consideration this year is around postage. With most mail services being delayed this year, it might be an opportunity to take advantage of vouchers and electronic gifts which can be delivered more easily.

3.      Use the information you have available

Now that we can target users based on whether they are single, in relationship, married or in a domestic partnership, when layered with shopping habits and search intent, it can be easier than ever to target those individuals who we know are looking for a gift in relation to Valentine's Day. This means if you have a more specific product or a smaller budget available to support these marketing efforts, the approach can be targeted directly towards those who are clearly going to be looking for gifting ideas, so you can focus entirely on the performance element of the activity.


It might seem early, but now is the time to be maximising on the expected search traffic and consumer mindset that will be prevalent until the middle of February. By jumping on a trend that is already developing, it can be a great way to get incremental brand awareness, interest and conversions for advertisers, linking together products and gifting to drive digital performance.

Looking for help with adapting your advertising activity to holidays and events? Speak to one of our specialists to find out how your campaigns can take advantage of seasonal trends.

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