On Valentine’s Day, businesses will be looking to create lasting, personal connections with their customers. This year, many businesses will be looking to show off their affection and find new partners using search and social advertising.

For some businesses such as those that specialize in greeting cards, flowers, candies, restaurants and vacation getaways, Valentine’s Day is of the biggest, and most lucrative, times of the year. But those aren’t the only businesses that can, and should, take advantage of the holiday to have some fun and bring in new customers.

Two ways for brands to show their loveable side; search engine advertising with a sense of humor and social media content geared toward embracing the spirit of cupid.

Making Yourself Available for Love

Every year there are millions of searches done in anticipation of Valentine’s Day. The most popular searches, according to Google, are about gifts, activities and dinner reservations. Some businesses are already thinking ahead and have put in bids for the most popular Valentine’s Day related keywords. But businesses can shine through the clutter by following some simple best practices.

  1. Give Searchers What They’re Looking For

valentine's day. social, search and social, search advertising, google, fathom eventsEntertainment related businesses like Fathom Events know that the holiday is made for couples looking to spice things up with a night on the town. So it had bid to make sure that its ad, featuring the ever so romantic Romeo and Juliet, is front and center for people looking for date ideas.

1. Create Unique Content for Each Audience

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When it comes to gifts, there are a ton of businesses competing for ad space. One thing to notice is how marketers target the content of the ad based on the search terms. The ads for “Valentine’s Day gifts for him” differ from “Valentine’s Day gifts for her” even though they may be from the same company. While the ads for male searchers focus on flowers, jewelry and edible arrangements; the ads for women searchers give links to sites that sell personalized gym bags, flasks, cigars and gift baskets designed for men. 

2. Mobile Matters

According to Google, 62 percent of all Valentine’s Day restaurant searches are conducted on mobile phones. So, businesses that are buying search ads but ignoring the mobile marketplace, are losing out on a ton of potential traffic. With more than $15 billion spent every year trying to woo significant others, every bit of visibility helps.

3. Integrate with Traditional Advertising

Many of the paid ads, specifically flower ads, directly tie in with traditional advertising that heavily promotes guaranteed delivery and competitive pricing and value compared to competitors. By integrating the messaging between traditional advertising channels like television and digital channels like paid search ads, brands can make a larger mental impression on potential customers and give them more opportunities to buy the products at the exact time they’re ready to make a decision.

Getting Cozy with Social Media

Valentine’s Day is the perfect opportunity for brands to connect with customers using social media. Holiday marketing on social media is not new or unique, but some brands put time and effort into thinking through each holiday’s strategy, and it shows to their target audiences.

–          Think Visually

On Facebook, being visual makes a difference when it comes to content as well. Posts that include a photo receive 53 percent more likes and 104 percent more comments than the average post.

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–          Be Charitable

search advertising, search and social, google ads, valentine's dayValentine’s Day’s is about giving, so brands should focus on giving as well. In 2013, Macy’s teamed up with Go Red For Women, a charity that helps fight heart disease in women. A strategy like this helps increase engagement through the social channels and sends a positive message about the brand. It also shows that social media posts that don’t mention the brand or a product can be effective at driving traffic and engagement.

–          Use Hashtags

search advertising, search and social, google ads, valentine's day, twitterHashtags are a great way for brands to give their customers a place to come together. They’re also a great way for brands to increase social media engagement, if used correctly. Brands have the option of either latching onto existing popular hashtags that will undoubtedly pop up such as #Vday and #Love. Or, marketers can attempt to create their own hashtag success. Just like other social media strategies, hashtags don’t have to directly promote a brand or product. Some of the most successful simply attempt to create engagement. Try asking for love stories from followers, what their favorite Valentine’s Day gift was, or what they want to do for the holiday.

ZOG Digital is the leading independent digital marketing company. Our discovery marketing solutions include social media marketing and paid advertising. Contact us now to learn more about increasing brand visibility and engagement across digital platforms.

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