The heart-shaped holiday can be noted as one of the most celebrated festivals around the world. Valentine’s Day is an occasion where men and women spend more than 15 billion dollars and there are companies who actively promote this behaviour. Fleura Bardhi, an associate professor of marketing at Northeastern University elaborates further on this subject.
When asked how marketing influences the meaning of a holiday, Bardhi says that “marketers change the meaning of holidays or the scripts for ritual celebrations.” The marketing procedures go to an extent where these holidays are uprooted from their religious traditions and are commercialised. In the case of Valentine’s Day, the marketers use emotions of envy which makes men buy romantic gifts for their partners as an act of obligation. Hence, the companies influence these individuals into conforming to the commercial side of the holiday.
Holidays in our culture are regarded with extreme importance as they give us a chance to step back from our routine schedules and everyday life. Thus, a holiday has to be celebrated and hence involves consumption making it an opportunity for companies. Valentine’s Day considers the sale of products like cards, flowers, chocolates, restaurant events, etc. which are associated with love and romance. The Greeting Card Association of the United States declares Valentine’s Day as the second-largest card-sending festival after Christmas. Apart from this, marketing strategies are strengthened by going out on dates, preparing and consuming food and drinks, clothing, and grooming.
The latest trends involve marketing companies to use social platforms like Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook in order to increase the consumption and promotion of Valentine’s Day products. This media can be used for consumer engagement by planning online photos, parties, gifts, and announcements regarding the day. Bardhi says, “Twitter has been effectively used by small, local businesses to remind consumers of the holiday and the various promotions that they provide for it”.