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Brian Shaw

One of the most difficult aspects of advertising can be trying to communicate a simple idea. Lucky for us, the language of love is universally understood. Powered by such a strong motivation, this means that Valentine’s Day is the perfect set up for clever and endearing advertisements. Here are our top ten favorite Valentine’s Day ads from the last 10 years.

1. Deadpool – True Love Never Dies

Just before last Valentine’s Day, Deadpool hit theaters. While Deadpool is actually a highly explicit, R-rated, 4th-wall-breaking comedy disguised as a superhero movie, it featured many prominent Valentine’s Day promotions that might have confused some potential moviegoers into thinking it was a Rom-Com. You never can trust advertisers, can you?

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2. Durex – Happy Father’s Day

This ad doesn’t hold anything back when it proclaims, in perfect tongue-and-cheek, that other brands simply don’t offer the same protection as Durex.
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3. Carphone Warehouse – Why Spend More?

Carphone Warehouse is a British mobile phone retailer who offers quick comparisons on phone prices, so you can get the most bang for your buck. In fact, they’re so affordable that they can even save you money on flowers for Valentine’s Day.

1-creative-valentine-ads4. HelpAge India – The Elderly Need Our Love Too

HelpAge India is non-profit dedicated to showing some respect to those who came before us. This clever ad reminds us that love isn’t just meant for the young.

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5. McDonald’s – The Proposal

McDonald’s might not be your first choice for a romantic dinner with your special someone, but honestly, it’d probably make for a more memorable Valentine’s Day. Kudos to McDonald’s for trying.

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6. Anthon Berg – The Love Experiment

Anthon Berg reminds us in this online video that telling those we care about that we care is good for our own health and happiness. And what better way to say it than with Anthon Berg chocolate (and some kind words of course)?

7. BMW – Motorbike Lovers

There’s definitely something romantic about riding off into the sunset on a motorcycle. I think this ad captures that feeling, don’t you?

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8. Wilkinson – Smooth Valentine’s Day

Wilkinson Sword is a British company that offers precision shaving instruments. This creative outdoor execution shows that they believe a smooth shave is paramount to a smooth Valentine’s Day.

9. Hovis Bread – Valentine’s Day

Hovis Bread is the third British company to make the list. I don’t know if it’s the incredible food photography or just the simplicity of this ad, but I truly would kill for some toast right now.

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10. Google – Love in Paris

Okay, technically this isn’t a Valentine’s Day ad, but when it comes to advertisements that make you feel the love, this commercial is one of the best.

 


Thanks for checking out our list of top ten Valentine’s Day ads over the last 10 years. Let us know which ad was your favorite in the comments below, or tell us if we missed an obvious winner.

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We all know that Valentine’s Day is a “Hallmark holiday”, meaning that it is perceived to exist primarily for commercial purposes, rather than to commemorate a traditionally or historically significant event. And although it is a day designated to celebrate love (and actually does have some historical significance), it gets quite a bit of hate, especially online.

That being said, February 14th is still the third-highest grossing holiday when it comes to consumer spending. If you are curious, Christmas comes in first with over $600 billion in consumer spending, and Mother’s Day comes in second, barely beating Valentine’s Day with $19.9 billion. Although only 55% of Americans say they will celebrate Valentine’s Day this year, the average male will spend $190 on February 14th. When you compare that to the current average daily spend for American consumers of $81 per day, it is no wonder that companies are willing to shell out the funds for a Valentine’s themed campaign.

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When it comes to Valentine’s Day campaigns, there are a few factors that brands have to consider:

  1. Men are going to spend the most, but the day is also very important to women. So how do you reach both audiences with a message that will leave an impression?
  2. There are hundreds of other companies who are also trying to get their message out on Valentine’s Day. How do you create a campaign that will break through the clutter?
  3. Often, Valentine’s Day ads have to compete with one of the most ad-happy events of the year – the Super Bowl. So your TV spots are going to be competing with some of the most creative, well produced spots of the year.

Check out these spots from this year’s set of Valentine’s Day campaigns. You will see that some brands clearly targeted men with weird, off-beat comedy. Some attempted to break through the clutter by pulling at your heartstrings, or by being a little provocative. Others tried to stand out by tying into the Super Bowl.

A day to celebrate love or a day made up for commercial purposes, either way you look at it, there are $19.7 billion in consumer spending at stake here, and it would be a shame for retail brands not to take advantage of Valentine’s Day.

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No, I’m not talking about flowers and chocolates, and I’m not talking about some elaborate marketing scheme. Rather, this short post is meant to provide one simple piece of food for thought. Your customers are going to be inundated with all kinds of marketing gimmicks and goodies this Valentine’s day, so it might not hurt to take a step back and give your followers something a little different: Some appreciation.

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There are countless articles on the web that address this same topic, but I think now is an apt time to consider implementing this well-covered strategy. Whether it’s thanking your loyal customers for their continued support or adding in a quick thank you to those who engage with your brand, making sure to show your gratitude will never not be cool.

So this Valentine’s, take a break from the romance and chocolate and give a big thank you to those who keep you in business. And hey, I just want to say thanks for reading this post. I really do appreciate it!

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