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Diamonds Are A Girl's Best Friend? A Valentine's Day Marketing Strategy.

Updated: Apr 6, 2018

Valentine's Day is here again! With Valentine’s Day spending expected to hit $19.6 billion in 2018, brands are scrambling to win the hearts and minds of consumers. According to the National Retail Federation, top spending categories include jewelry, an evening out, flowers, candy and clothing.

This article will analyze how two jewelry brands target consumers with their omnichannel marketing strategies for Valentine's Day 2018.

Zales: The Diamond Store

Since 1924, Zales, The Diamond Store, has been designing stylish diamond, gemstone and fashion jewelry. The brand has both online and physical stores and markets on their website, social media, online affiliates and television commercials.

2018 Zale's Valentine's Day Campaign

  • Title: Bring The Love

  • Target Audience: Women

  • Marketing Message: “Bring The Love”

  • Discount Offered: 25% Off Everything

  • Marketing Channels Used: Website, TV Commercials, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, eBay, Groupon, outlets

Kay Jewelers

Kay Jewelers was established in 1916 and sold products like eyeglasses, jewelry boxes and electric razors. Since then the U.S. specialty jewelry brand has expanded to more than 900 stores nation wide.

2018 Kay Jeweler's Valentine's Day Campaign

  • Title: Win Valentine's Day

  • Target Audience: Men

  • Marketing Message: “Trick Shots are hard, valentine’s day doesn’t have to be.”

  • Discount Offered: 25-50% Off Everything

  • Marketing Channels Used: Website, TV Commercials, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Groupon, outlets

When Should Businesses Start Advertising?

Zales started their Valentine’s Day campaigns on social media on January 12 while Kay Jewelers launched their campaign on January 21. Did these jewelers start advertising in time for Valentine’s Day?

Zales & Kay Jewelers Advertising Timeline For Valentine's Day 2018

When we take a look at search engine trends for “Valentine’s Day Gifts” in 2017, we see an increase in search traffic from January 8 to February 13. From past experience, Zales started their social media campaign on January 12 to engage customers early and position its products in their consideration set.

Organic Search Traffic for "Valentine's Day Gifts" 2017 (from Google Trends)

Who Should Businesses Target? Men or Women?

Both Zales and Kay Jewelers had different strategies for Valentine’s Day 2018. Zales targeted women with their marketing message, “Bring The Love”. The marketing message aims to build up anticipation for Valentine’s Day and get women to influence their partner’s purchasing decision.

While Kay Jewelers went with an unconventional route and appealed to men in their advertisement saying that buying a gift from Kay’s is easier than performing a basketball trick shot. The advertisement assumes that men are the final buyers and decision makers. Did Kay have really have an insights into customer’s spending behavior? Although targeting men for Valentine's Day might seem out of the box to many but a Quartz survey, showed that men spent 2.3X more than women on Valentine’s Day gifts.

Which Marketing Channels To Use?

Both Zales and Kay Jewelers leveraged on social media, their websites, television commercials and other online affiliates for their Valentine’s Day advertisements. In terms of execution, Zales did a better job by integrating the various channels with one consistent message, “Bring The Love”. Kay's was a little inconsistent with multiple different messages across various channels.

Although social media marketing is more cost effective and engaging than television commercials, TV commercials have the ability to reach a large target audience in a short period of time. Given that Valentine’s Day is a seasonal event for jewelers, both companies adopted an omnichannel approach to their marketing.

Using TV commercials to reach large audiences, social media to influence and their website (or stores) to convert customers. The key to using an omnichannel strategy for marketing is to be able to integrate all channels seamlessly and create multiple customer touch points.

Comparison Table: Marketing Costs For Social Media Vs Television Commercials

How Effective Were Their Campaigns?

Both Zales and Kay Jewelers saw an increase in organic search traffic. Ultimately Kay Jewelers whose strategy targeted men with the message that "buying a Valentine’s Day gift from Kay’s is simple" generated more interest and higher organic search traffic.

Although a higher organic traffic might indicate that Kay's campaign was more effective, we need to evaluate paid traffic as well. Further investigation revealed that both retailers had similar volumes of paid traffic (200K per day).

We also have to be mindful that actual purchase decisions might be different from buying intent. Apart from these factors, Kay Jewelers' "Trick Shot" Valentine's Day campaign was more effective.

Organic Search Trends: Kay Jewelers vs Zales (from Google Trends)

With Valentine's Day around the corner, what are you waiting for? Start targeting your customers with a well designed and executed marketing campaign. Be sure to conduct proper market research, understand your target audience and use an omni-channel strategy with a consistent marketing message to drive sales.

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