This post was originally published February 2, 2021.
Valentine’s Day is right around the corner.
And it’s the PERFECT excuse to come up with an offer you can share with your audience to bring in sales for your store.
Whether you feature products you already have, launch something brand new, or test out a giveaway with other brands, there's a ton you can do to make Valentine's Day a revenue-generating holiday for your business.
Here are 18 ideas you can try with examples that'll make it easier than ever to get a campaign live ASAP.
1. Showcase the products you already have
This example from Fly by Jing looks fancy, but I’m gonna let you in on a little secret…
The only thing they did to make this email fit the Valentine’s Day theme is position products they already had.
The envelope with their products inside on top of language like, “Do they love you more than food?” and “A friendly reminder for your loved ones to season their food,” makes it really clear this is for Valentine’s Day.
But when you actually click on the buttons (I’m obsessed with the one that says Season(ings) of love), you land on product pages and the entire collection of products.
Which proves you don’t have to do anything over the top to stand out. You really can use the products you already have and use a playful, on-theme message to get sales and encourage your subscribers to buy your products as gifts.
2. Try a giveaway (with other brands or on your own)
VINEBOX partnered with 5 other brands to launch a Galentine’s Day giveaway their customers would love.
Giveaways are an amazing way to build your email list because they give your brand exposure with a totally new audience. And you’ll get access to the entire list of people who sign up.
But if you’re not sure who to reach out to, you could always launch something similar on your own.
Give away a certain best-selling product (it would also be awesome if it was a one-of-a-kind product) by asking your Instagram followers to tag 3 friends (so they get introduced to your brand), follow your brand, and add your post to their story to be entered to win.
This won’t get you access to a brand new audience, but if enough people participate, a pretty large group of people could potentially be seeing your products and get introduced to your brand.
So test out a giveaway! And get creative if you’re not sure who to reach out to to get a full blown giveaway off the ground. Remember: there’s nothing wrong with starting small.
3. Launch a collab with a like-minded brand
A giveaway isn't the only way to get in front of another brand's audience. Launching an exclusive product or line of products as part of a collaboration with another business is another great way to get exposure around Valentine's Day.
Complete with holiday-specific bandanas, collars and leashes, this limited-edition collection couldn't be more perfect for Valentine's Day.
And while themed products definitely take more time to execute on, it's a great way to drive sales for your store. Especially with your most loyal customers who can't get enough of your products.
4. Encourage a subscription
And their Valentine’s Day messaging was no exception.
I looooove that they used a visual and said “This could be your mailbox.”
The fact that they walk you through the process step by step is also genius (imagine how many customer support tickets they probably would’ve received otherwise).
It is SO simple. But really effective and an awesome way to position your product as the perfect Valentine’s Day gift for the special people in your life.
And honestly, even if you don’t have a subscription-based product, you could still run this exact play. Take a picture of your product in your mailbox, and make it feel like the perfect gift for your subscribers.
The easier you can make the decision for them, the better.
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5. Tie sales in with a mission
I don’t know about you, but if the choice is between two brands that have really similar products and one gives back and the other doesn’t, I’m going with the charitable option every single time.
Which is what makes this underbares messaging so amazing.
Donating a bra to a charitable organization for every order placed from February 1st through 14th shows how dedicated they really are to putting mission first.
So even if you didn’t necessarily need any of their products now, this might push you over the edge. And if you don’t end up buying, you’ll definitely remember that as a brand, they care about giving back.
Even if you don’t give back throughout the whole year, Valentine’s Day is the perfect time to lean into it. And make sure you follow up with your subscribers! A note like, “Because of you, we were able to donate $X to X organization…” gives you another reason to reach out and share something awesome.
6. Remove friction and make it a no-brainer purchase
Snif is reinventing the perfume industry. So they let you try their products before you pay a dime.
And usually the trial period is 7 days from the delivery date. But as part of their Valentine’s Day campaign, they’re extending it through 2/21. Which could potentially give you an extra couple weeks with the products.
So while their business model is pretty unique and this might not be something that makes sense for you to offer, it’s really just about getting creative and understanding what matters for your customers.
For Snif, this offer is seriously a no-brainer. What does that look like for your brand?
It could be as simple as extending the warranty of your product or the returns window. Or maybe you offer Free 2-day shipping as the holiday gets closer.
7. Create a themed bundle with products you already have
WithCo created a date night bundle in a box.
And everything that’s included is part of their normal product lineup. So this is something you could easily do with products that pair well together.
Take your best-sellers and create a bundle at a discounted price. It’s a really low lift way to do something for Valentine’s Day without feeling like you don’t know where to start.
Add in some fun product photos that feel holiday-themed and BAM! You’re ready.
Herbivore also leaned into the themed bundle...
Favorite products together + cute packaging + a discount = a winning combination.
8. Lean into self love
Most people have a tendency to do more for other people than for themselves.
And now, more than ever, we could all benefit from a little self love. Which is why I love Grounded Plants’ messaging so much.
Would these plants be the perfect gift to get someone special in your life? 100%. But rather than crafting their messaging around gifting for others, they lean into gifting for yourself.
“Self-love means having a high regard for your own well-being and happiness. Self-love means taking care of your own needs and not sacrificing your well-being to please others. Self-love means not settling for less than you deserve. Self-love is whatever it means to you, to love yourself.”
How genuine and real does that message feel?
It’s a totally different spin on the Valentine’s Day message, but it doesn’t feel selfish. It feels like an encouragement to do something for yourself. Whatever that looks like for you.
9. Give an unexpected discount
How clever is the fill-in-the blank letter to your future self?
But they didn’t stop there. They also encourage a Bobbi Brown purchase with an exclusive discount code for 15% off. An unexpected surprise!
And Lunya hardly ever discounts, so this is an awesome way for them to show value to their subscribers without actually having to discount their own items.
But if you’re ok with a discount, Valentine’s Day is a great time to do it! Even if it’s just on 1 item that you don’t usually run promos for.
10. Tap into your personal side
Yep. More self love.
But Bandier’s founder does it a little differently (btw, I love that it’s from Jennifer Bandier rather than just Bandier, which is what they usually do).
She introduces her favorite ways to show herself love, showcases some of her favorite products that really fit in with that theme, and ends the email with an encouraging message to reach out to the people you love (and mentions that she calls her own mom every single day).
It also makes a big difference that she shares how she uses each of these products in her daily life. “Bala Bangles give me the extra resistance I want while doing leg lifts when I’m watching TV. Told you I’m a serious multi-tasker.”
By the end of the email, you really do feel like you’ve created a personal connection with her. That’s a total win. So even if you don’t have a specific offer you want to showcase, be yourself and tell a story.
11. Switch up your layout
Outdoor Voices doesn’t usually send plain text emails, so I think that’s what really got me interested in this message at the beginning.
And it’s not even really about Valentine’s Day...
They just include a subtle reminder at the very end of the email to remind you that this particular product would make an awesome gift.
So if you have a product you really want to feature as an awesome gift, this could be a great format to try.
If you usually send emails packed with images and little text, switch things up! Write it like you’re writing to your best friend and I promise the message will feel 100x more natural than if you treat is as a “brand” email.
12. Launch a special edition product
Holidays are the perfect excuse to come up with a special edition product.
It could be an exclusive color of a product you already have. Or something that makes a product feel extra special.
That’s exactly what Cleobella did with this limited edition jacket.
Only available for the month of February, this product feels exclusive and timeless.
And it’s a really small adjustment to a product they already have.
13. Send a reminder email
How many times have you completely forgotten about a holiday like Valentine's Day?
Sending helpful reminders to your audience is a great way to stay top of mind and make sure they're thinking about your brand.
EF Collection let their subscribers know when Valentine's Day was just 1 month away:
Pair that with their on-theme products, and it's the perfect opportunity to bring in sales. Plus, they send a text with really similar messaging to make sure their most engaged audience doesn't miss out:
You can't expect to send a single message and have a record-breaking sales day...
14. Send more than 1 email
VINEBOX didn’t just send 1 email about their special Valentine’s Day product. In less than 1 month, they sent 5 emails highlighting the Reds and Roses box.
And 5 emails in a month might feel like too much for your brand (especially if you haven’t been sending many emails), but what really makes this work is the fact that each message feels fresh.
And I love that they challenge what a typical Valentine’s Day looks like with comments like, “These Reds & Roses will never wilt” and “Better than paying too much for a prix fixe meal.”
Switching up the copy and the photos makes a big difference if you’re going to send more than one email about the same offer.
But just a reminder: your subscribers are busy. So it’s probably not realistic to send 1 email and expect it to have the same impact as sending more. You just don’t want to overwhelm your list if they’re not used to getting regular emails from you (you don’t want them to unsubscribe!), but a handful of touches isn’t enough to be annoying.
15. Reward your VIP customers
Sometimes the best thing you can do for your brand is to get back to the basics.
If you want to keep your Valentine’s Day campaign super simple, you could pick a handful of your best, most loyal customers and give them something for Valentine’s Day. I promise this kind of thing will go a long way.
Take 2 hours. Send them a handwritten, Valentine’s-themed note just to say thank you or surprise them with $10 off their next purchase. If you have anything small, like samples or mini sizes, you could also include something like that with it.
You already have their addresses, so this should be a really low lift on your end.
And if you reward your customers who keep coming back to you over and over again, they’ll stick around around even longer. And they’ll come to you first. So use a holiday like Valentine’s Day to surprise and delight your best customers.
Not many brands do things like this, but think about how you would feel if one of your favorite brands sent you a handwritten note just to say thanks for being a loyal customer. I know that’s something that would stand out to me.
16. Expand your product offerings
On top of Death Wish Coffee's new Medium Roast coffee, they're also dabbling with offers on their other merch for Valentine's Day.
And, like a bunch of other brands we saw, really leaning into the idea of self care with a candle and kit.
I love that they're kind of sassy with the language they use. It feels on brand and just works for them.
So use holidays to think outside the box and take a chance on something brand new.
17. Try a free gift with purchase
A free gift with purchase to incentivize a Valentine's Day sale is an easy-to-execute campaign you can pull together ASAP.
For bala, that looked like free pink sliders with every Valentine's Day purchase:
Plus, they showcase pink and purple products to stay on theme with their messaging. It's the perfect way to throw in an inexpensive product and get shoppers over the hump to make a purchase.
18. Share helpful content and add value
Maybe you want to showcase something other than your products this Valentine's Day and just do something that's valuable for your audience.
Snif put together a Valentine's-themed playlist:
And waiting to send it on the day itself is super smart. Because by then, it's a little late to be ordering gifts for your loved ones. So it's the perfect way to show your customers you care and give them something special.
For kencko, that looked like a helpful blog post:
A totally different way to add value, this a piece of content is another great reason to reach out to your audience this Valentine's Day without asking for a sale.
Because when you mix in different messaging and don't constantly try to sell, sell, sell, your subscribers will be so much more receptive when you do ask for a sale.
14 Valentine's Day subject line ideas
Of course your subject line will depend on your offer, but to get you started, here are 14 subject lines you can make your own this Valentine's Day:
- Not a Valentine's Day sale ❤️
- A Valentine's Day gift for you
- Valentine's Day is next week.
- The only thing your V-day is missing...
- A Valentine's vibe 💕
- From us, to you ❣️
- thinking-of-you gifts, delivered.
- What's your love language?
- A love letter to you 💌
- The perfect last-minute valentine
- A Valentine's to remember
- It's a date 🌹
- it's called self care. XOXO
- Stay out of the doghouse.
Takeaways: You can lean into Valentine's Day no matter what
Whether you sell beauty products, hot sauce, or chocolate covered mini cones, you can (and should) be using Valentine's Day as an opportunity to come up with an offer and send emails and texts to your audience.
You can create bundles, run a discount, launch a new product, or just send a personal note to make it memorable.
There's no rulebook for the perfect Valentine's Day campaign, but hopefully these 18 examples inspired you to come up with a creative reason to reach out (and keep building a relationship with) your subscribers.