There’s been a noticeable increase in brands aligning their communications to all sorts of “global events” and Hallmark holidays of late – and the line between relevance and jumping on the bandwagon seems blurrier than ever.
Take for example, the recent Valentine’s Day. While it makes sense for florists and jewellers to target time-poor partners looking to make their other half happy without having to leave their office chair*, why did a property development company slide into my emails with “Valentine’s Day Real Estate Deals”? Is romance truly dead?
For some brands, relevance is an afterthought, as they desperately try to raise awareness and sales through any means possible. Don’t get me wrong – there are some fabricated occasions that brands do very well running promotions around, such as Black Friday (which incidentally should only exist in the US as it is centred around Thanksgiving, but is now a global phenomenon thanks to Amazon…I digress). As much as they benefit shoppers who are genuinely searching for a good deal, have you ever stopped and asked yourself if your promotional messages are causing more damage to your brand reputation than they are driving revenue?
Having a strong brand narrative that clearly reflects your brand’s underlying values, as well as knowing your audience, should help answer this question. If, for example, one of your values is to always be authentic, then this should rule out shoehorning your latest promotion into the next calendar milestone – otherwise you risk coming across as disingenuous. If your customers are not HNW individuals who have the capital to buy property as a gesture of love (not me – which starts a whole new conversation about targeting!), you might want to reconsider what they might actually be looking for in a Valentine’s Day deal!
At The Giles Agency, we work with you to ensure your promotional messages align with the needs of your audience through engaging copy and design that is true-to-brand. Although there is no harm in leveraging specific circumstances to push your products or services, your hook must be a meaningful one. As costs of living rise and consumers inevitably spend less, making it more challenging for you to hit sales targets, remember the long game – that trust can take years to build but all love can be lost in just one junk email!
*Pardon the sweeping generalisation from a Valentine’s Day cynic; I am sure many spend hours searching for the perfect gift!