Frontline Marketing

Unwrapping This Year’s Valentine’s Day Trends

By | February 13, 2017 |

America’s favorite Hallmark holiday is just hours away, and when more love is in the air, there’s less money in our wallets—which is music to the ears of brand marketers.

If your true love is donuts, however, you could refill that wallet in a hurry. Dunkin’ Donuts is bringing out “Dunkin’ Love” with an Instagram photo contest that asks fans to share how the baked goods and coffee chain is part of their love story via the hashtag #DunkinLoveContest. The grand prize winner will receive a year’s worth of coffee and donuts, as well as $2,500. Caffeinated cupids are also encouraged to take advantage of a special iMessage card builder, two Snapchat filters, an emoji keyboard on its app and a special Facebook Live performance this evening by acoustic husband and wife band, Us The Duo.

Speaking of iMessage, Hallmark is offering free, animated Fabio Valentine’s Day stickers with the download of its eCards app. Last year, the greeting card giant partnered with AMC’s The Walking Dead to offer zombie-themed greetings for the undead lover in your life.

Burger King Israel is offering a more . . . ahem . . . adult approach to the romantic holiday by offering special Adult-only meals on Valentine’s Day after 6 pm. The 18-and-over meal includes two Whoppers, two packs of french fries, two beers and a “toy” such as blind fold or feather duster.

US consumers spent a staggering $19.7 billion last year on Valentine’s Day—a record high—but they are expected to spend less this year at around $18.2 billion according to the National Retail Federation (NRF). If this is going to be just another Taco Tuesday for you, you’re in good company—just a little more than half (53 percent) plan to celebrate the romantic holiday in 2017.

You Can’t Buy Love, But You Can Buy Candy

NRF’s annual consumer survey found the most popular gift choice to be candy (50 percent of those participating), followed by greeting cards at 47 percent. Consumers will spend the most money, however, on jewelry—$4.3 billion (given by 19 percent of shoppers), $3.8 billion on an evening out (37 percent), $2 billion on flowers (35 percent), $1.9 billion on clothing (19 percent), $1.7 billion on candy (50 percent), $1.4 billion on gift cards/gift certificates (16 percent) and $1 billion on greeting cards (47 percent). While 40 percent of consumers want the gift of an experience such as concert tickets or an outdoor adventure, only 24 percent plan to give one in 2017.

Who are the lucky recipients of these Valentine’s Day gifts? NRF found that consumers plan to spend an average $85.21 on their significant other/spouse, $26.59 on other family members such as children or parents, $6.56 on children’s classmates/teachers, $6.51 on friends, $4.27 on co-workers and (don’t forget Fido) $4.44 on pets.

Department Stores And Rainbow Roses

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It may be surprising to learn that online is not the number one go-to shopping destination this year, but rather department stores at 35 percent. Twenty-seven percent of respondents indicated that they would do their Valentine’s Day shopping via the internet.

While many will make their final transactions in-person, mobile research remains a standard among consumers. In fact search engine Bing reported that 48 percent of all Valentine’s Day searches on its platform last year originated from mobile devices. Google says that Valentine’s Day is the number two most-searched holiday for last-minute gifts. Search terms, “florist near me” has increased 2.6 times year-over-year and “chocolates near me” has increased 4.1 times year-over-year.

When it comes to giving flowers, roses are still the most popular—but consumers are beginning to steer away from the iconic red color. Search tool provider, SLI Systems analyzed more than 1.2 million e-commerce site searches on leading floral websites between January 6 and February 6, 2017.

What they found was that while red roses are still the most searched-for at 28 percent, their popularity (in searches) has declined 19 percent since 2015. In 2015, pink was the most popular rose color search, but in 2017 it hasn’t even made the top five.

Meanwhile, white roses (21 percent of searched flowers) saw a five percent increase since 2015 and there has become a major interest in blue, rainbow and purple this year.

If you don’t have a significant other to shower you with petals, just pull of the boss move of sending yourself some flowers—just make sure the note you write is just as genuine.