Valentine’s Day Advertising Insights We #LOVE

Love it or hate it, Valentine’s Day is too huge for marketers to ignore. Valentine’s Day is reported to be the 4th largest shopping day of the entire year, raking in an estimated $19.7 billion last year alone.  And Valentine’s Day 2017 will likely see just as much spending. More importantly, marketers need to take some time to truly understand Valentine’s Day shopping demographics to capitalize on this opportunity.

Over 50% of people will be celebrating Valentine’s Day in some form, according to Bing. But people don’t celebrate Valentine’s Day in the same way across the board. It’s the finer details and data around Valentine’s Day shoppers that will prepare marketers to “get-some”… leads. North America’s most popular search engines, Bing and Google, shed some light on these trends.

Valentine’s Day Search Marketing Insights

Both Google and Bing note that searches for all-things Valentine’s Day have a very short ramp-up time, beginning at the end of January. The major surge in searches begins on February 12th and 13th, then hitting a peak on the 14th across desktop and mobile users, according to Google. Similarly, mobile searches surpass desktop only the day before Valentine’s Day, potentially illustrating last minute gift shoppers. Clicks on Bing ads for Valentine’s Day gifts peak between February 7th and 12th. Last year, the Bing Network delivered SERPS for 694M Valentine’s Day searches, with a conversion rate of 7.76%.

Over a quarter of consumers will shop online (35% shopped online and in-store) for V-day gifts and knowing when to target these users with your ad is critical to the success of your campaign. Knowing what to target them with is the next part of this love story.

Valentine’s Advertising For Family and Fur-babies

Interestingly, Google points out that in 2015 there were 3 times as many searches for “gifts for boyfriend” than “gifts for girlfriend” during the Valentine’s Day season. You’d probably think the opposite is true, but the numbers don’t lie. Marketers – make sure you’re optimizing Valentine’s Day campaigns for products guys want too.

Screenshot of Google search ads displaying for "valentines gift for boyfriend"
Screenshot of Google search ads displaying for “valentines gift for boyfriend”


Marketers should also dispel the idea that Valentine’s Day is solely for couples. A recent survey found that consumers will spend the most on their significant other, but still plan to buy a Valentine’s Day gift for family members, friends, and co-workers. Since shoppers will spend less on non-romantic gifts, it makes sense to create ads for more affordable gifts, like the third ad above from that includes a link to their “Gifts Under $25” page.

Don’t forget pets are also part of Valentine’s Day spending and it’s easy to see why:

Screenshot of Bing Image Search Results for "valentines gift for pets"
Screenshot of Bing Image Search Results for “valentines gift for pets”


Last year, Bing found that $681 million was spent on Valentine’s Day gifts for our beloved furry friends. Yes, that’s surprising, but heart-warming news for marketers and businesses specializing in pet-related products.

These Industries Get the Most Love on Valentine’s Day

While Valentine’s Day heralds a surge in online shopping, it’s important to note that certain industries do much better than others. Like any holiday, Valentine’s Day has its traditions and that translates into certain gifts being searched for and purchased more often. Averaging $134 per person in the U.S. in 2014, industries like candy/chocolate, flowers and jewelry tend to do the best during the Valentine’s Day shopping season.

Screenshot of Google Trends Data for "Roses" in the Last 12 Months
Screenshot of Google Trends Data for “Roses” in the Last 12 Months


Marketing campaigns outside of these popular I-Love-You worthy industries may have a more difficult time attracting shoppers to their ads and have to be creative to get lovers to think outside the heart-shaped box. At the same time, if you’re running marketing for a chocolate company don’t assume you can just coast by and let shoppers come to you on Valentines Day. In fact, these industries may have a more difficult time capitalizing on the holiday of love because they have to stand out from their competition. In case you’re having any difficulty, we pulled some inspiring campaign examples from the most popular Valentine’s Day industries.

3 Valentine’s Day Campaigns That Will Warm Your Heart

Teleflora Loves Mobile

Teleflora, a flower-delivery service that links local florists with online shoppers, was able to rake in sales by changing up their marketing strategy. Knowing that more and more users were making purchases with their phone, Teleflora focused on mobile ads and saw a 50% increase in revenue.


Lindt Goes Girly

Chocolate is one of the most popular gifts on Valentine’s Day and for Lindt that is no secret. The brand is also aware that Valentine’s Day isn’t just for couples and so they created a clever online contest campaign specifically geared towards girlfriends. With Lindt’s “Ultimate Galentine’s Day Kit,” the chocolate brand is capitalizing on the V-Day friend-market, a source of revenue often overlooked on this particular holiday.


JR Dunn Lends a Love Message

Jewelry is no slouch during the Valentine’s Day season either. Rings are the most searched-for gift, generating some of the most traffic and conversions in early February. Engagement rings specifically account for 21% of searches in the jewelry-category.

The romance tied to engagement rings and jewelry provides some interesting routes for marketers. Take this adorable JR Dunn Jewelers campaign as an example.

JR Dunn Valentine's Day Billboard from Facebook
JR Dunn Valentine’s Day Billboard from Facebook


The jewelry company let a Florida man use their billboard to declare his love to his wife in an elaborate way, part of the couple’s 25 year tradition. Media outlets picked up on the story and J.R. Dunn got some free press all while tying their brand to romance and love.

Feel the Love!

While Valentines Day is like Black Friday for florists, chocolatiers and jewelers, it also offers opportunities for all marketing teams and advertisers. With a little know-how, pet stores can cash-in with a quick PPC campaign for those heart-shaped dog collar tags; campaign managers can expect ROI from investing more in mobile; marketers selling gadgets-for-guys will target the end-user’s lover rather than the actual end-user and everyone can get inspired from the exceptional campaign examples featured above. With all of the rich Valentine’s data outlined here, marketers have the gift they really wanted this year – the tools and techniques to lift sales and conversions during the season of love!


Image Credits:

Featured Image: Mayur Gala/Unsplash

All screenshots by Beth Thouin. Taken February 2017.

Beth Thouin

Beth Thouin

Beth is VP Marketing at Acquisio. With 14 years of marketing experience, in 2011 she started working with startups and tech companies, and never looked back. She consults, mentors and speaks on customer acquisition in the Montreal tech community.

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