Roses Are Red and Valentine’s Day Is Whatever You Want It to Be

It’s that time of year again. The time of year where you cannot walk into a convenience store without pink hearts and red roses slapping you in the face. The time of year where you cannot walk down the street without seeing restaurants advertising that special “dinner for two” reservation. That’s right, it’s Valentine’s Day! The best day of the year to celebrate with your significant other or to self loathe with a pint of ice cream and a whole pizza.

Whichever way you choose to celebrate, Valentine’s Day is similar to many other holidays in the way in which it’s capitalized by businesses and corporations to make money. The most popular (and old fashioned) way PR practitioners and marketers have used the holiday to their advantage is by using the typical scenario of a heterosexual couple celebrating their love in materialistic ways. Jewelers hold sales for the holiday in addition to producing a sappy commercial where a beautiful woman receives a beautiful diamond ring alongside a bouquet of flowers from her male partner.

This marketing and PR strategy has worked for businesses for years. In more recent times, businesses should be considering the consumers who do not fit into that traditional target audience. There are two very large groups historically excluded from this holiday: those within the LGBTQ community and those who are single. Within the next few years, PR professionals, marketers and advertisers should become more aware that this holiday does not fit just one target audience, but rather is a day to celebrate love with whoever, wherever.

One prime example of a company who has already started to realize that not all of their consumers are in a relationship is Aerie. Aerie has launched a campaign this Valentine’s Day called “U-Day”. This aims to advocate for the idea of self-love and gifting yourself with either something material or an inner appreciation for yourself. With campaigns like Aerie’s on the rise, we may be seeing future Valentine’s Day promotions heading towards a new direction. After all, love itself does not exclude any audience, so why should Valentine’s Day?

This blog post was written by Account Associate Jenna Garcia.

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