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Valentine’s Day Marketing; A Chocolate Story.

Happy Valentine’s! As we celebrate this day with loved ones, it also presents an opportunity to learn from marketing successes of this day. After all, a true measure of marketing genius is never to let a great trend or occasion go to waste. Marketing campaigns during Valentine’s focus on the idea of love, romance, and togetherness. They often feature messaging, imagery, or colors associated with Valentine’s Day, such as hearts, flowers, and shades of red and pink. Brands may also offer special deals, promotions, or limited edition products to entice consumers to buy gifts for their loved ones. Social media is often used to promote Valentine’s Day marketing campaigns, with brands creating hashtags, running contests, or partnering with influencers to reach a wider audience.

Valentine’s Day origin

Valentine’s Day has its origins in ancient Rome, where a mid-February festival called Lupercalia was celebrated to ward off evil spirits and purify the city. During the festival, men drew the names of women from a box, and the chosen pair would be paired off for the remainder of the festival or sometimes longer. Later, in the 5th century, the Christian church repurposed the holiday to honor Saint Valentine, a priest who was martyred for performing marriages in secret. Over time, Valentine’s Day became associated with romantic love, and by the Middle Ages, it was a popular occasion for exchanging love notes or tokens of affection.

Chocolate and Valentine’s Day

Chocolates are now synonymous with Valentine’s Day because they are seen as a symbol of love and affection. But how did this begin? The tradition of giving chocolates on Valentine’s Day can be traced back to 1868, when Richard Cadbury introduced heart-shaped boxes of chocolates as a Valentine’s Day promotion.  Richard, together with his younger brother George took over the running of their father’s cocoa and chocolate company (Cadbury) in 1861. Richard saw the opportunity in commercializing the heart shape that had grown in usage in the Romantic era of the 18th and 19th Century. The heart shape had been used for centuries but it wasn’t until the Romantic era that the heart shape became widely associated with romantic love. The increased celebration of Valentine’s Day as a day for lovers and exchange of gifts is what gave Richard the idea to sell chocolate in heart-shaped boxes on Valentine’s Day. The boxes were decorated with romantic imagery and designed to be kept as a memento after the chocolates were eaten. This proved to be a popular gift choice and helped establish the association between chocolates and Valentine’s Day. Chocolates are also believed to have mood-enhancing properties, thanks to their content which can induce feelings of happiness and pleasure. This makes them a fitting gift for a day that celebrates love and affection.

Godiva Valentine’s Day chocolate marketing campaign

There have been great Valentine’s Day campaigns over the years. One that stands out is the Godiva chocolate campaign. Godiva is one of the most popular luxury Belgian chocolate makers in the world. Godiva’s chocolate is made mostly from a blend of cacao beans from Africa and South America, and the company is known for its intricate flavor profiles. In addition to the signature dark and milk chocolates, Godiva also offers a wide range of flavor-infused chocolates, including fruit, nut, and spice blends. To go with that, Godiva has beautiful chocolate boxes that are perfect for gifts or parties because of their high quality construction and presentation.

Godiva’s “Love, Godiva” Campaign: Godiva’s Valentine’s Day campaign included a social media contest where customers could share their love stories for a chance to win a year’s supply of chocolate. The campaign generated over 7,000 entries and a significant increase in social media engagement. To participate in the contest, customers were asked to share a photo of themselves with their loved one on social media, along with a caption that included the hashtag #LoveGodiva. The campaign generated over 7,000 entries, with many customers sharing heartfelt stories about their relationships. The campaign was highly successful in terms of social media engagement, with a significant increase in Godiva’s social media followers and likes. The campaign also helped to position Godiva as a brand that is associated with love and romance, which is important for a holiday like Valentine’s Day.

Godiva marketing partnerships

Godiva has had a variety of Valentine’s Day campaigns over the years, but they typically focus on promoting their chocolates and gift sets as a romantic and indulgent gift. Their campaigns often feature heart-shaped chocolate boxes, limited edition truffles and other chocolate treats, and packaging and messaging that is festive and romantic. In some years, Godiva has also partnered with other brands or artists to create special Valentine’s Day products or experiences. For example, in 2019, they collaborated with fashion designer Jonathan Adler to create a special edition “Love Bug” chocolate box, which was designed to look like a ladybug and featured a playful and romantic message. In 2020, they partnered with the dating app Bumble to offer a special Valentine’s Day deal to users, which included a discount on Godiva chocolates and a free trial of Bumble’s premium features. This year, Godiva and Le Vian (a jewelry company) patnered to offer consumers the opportunity to instantly win a Godiva X Le Vian ruby heart pendant necklace. To enter, customers were required to purchase any Godiva product, take a picture of the receipt and upload it to for a chance to win diamond and strawberry gold jewelry.

Overall, Godiva’s campaigns are a great example of how brands can use social media campaigns and marketing partnerships to engage with customers and create an emotional connection with their product.

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