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In the blink of an eye, we’re now entering the second month of 2021. Affiliates, there’s no time to waste – it’s time to put your feet to the pedal and rev up your marketing strategy for February. Every marketer will be stepping up in preparation for the most romantic and lucrative date of the year:

Valentine’s Day.

Needless to say, the event is a huge opportunity for all businesses, not just affiliates. With all the competition you’re facing, every little thing to set your ads apart from the rest counts.

In this article, we’ll be looking into the ways you can prime your campaigns for Europe audiences specifically, and go a step above generic pink hearts and bubblegum pop.

Granted, Valentine’s Day isn’t as huge of a consumer event in Europe as it is in the States. However, there are still shared trends and a significant amount of spending involved, which means great opportunities for you as an affiliate marketer.

Who to Target:

In the West, men expect to spend more than their female partners on Valentine’s Day. Multiple studies in the US and UK found that men expected to spend up to 65% to twice the amount than that of women for the holiday. Things are quite different in Asian countries such as Japan and Korea, where the holiday tradition revolves around women giving gifts to men, be it romantic, platonic or even obligatory.

Statistics for the US and Denmark found the younger generation to be bigger spenders than their older counterparts – millennials in particular. This is most likely due to them having less financial obligations and being exposed to social media and international trends more. Additionally, it’s found that couples together for less than two years tend to spend more. Engaged couples also spend more than married ones.

TLDR, some targeting segmentations to consider include: gender, age, length of relationship, stage of relationship.

What Offers to Run (Consider: the Pandemic):

Mastercard Europe shared what people are spending on in the lead up to Valentine’s Day back in Feb 2020. The general trend indicated an increase in spending on events and experiences, and lesser emphasis on gifts. However, all that was before the whole world got caught up in the chaos that is COVID-19. With the second wave and new strains emerging, new curfews, lockdowns and travel restrictions are being imposed in Europe. Candlelit dinners outside will have to be cut short. Hotel and flight get-aways will be difficult too. It’s likely that people will fall back to traditional gifts, which means an increase in online shopping and huge opportunities for you.

Consider:

Food delivery & Entertainment offers – enable people to dine in and a romantic Valentine’s Day dinner in the safety of their own homes.

eCommerce offers – If you’re working with male audiences, promoting flowers, chocolates, perfume and jewelry as gifts for their ladies are failsafe choices, as these products consistently top the charts for this holiday. If you’re working with female audiences, male grooming products, clothes, shoes and electronics as gifts for the men in their lives could work well.

Additionally, even if you don’t usually delve into such verticals, Beauty offers would be good to consider as well – such as skincare, facial masks, cosmetics etc. There are two possible strategies:

1) Target female audiences who want to look their best for their dates

2) Target boyfriends & husbands, and help them spoil & pamper the ladies.

When to Scale:

Mastercard’s review of past data showed a gradual decline in last minute shoppers over the past few years. 2019 saw the most Valentine’s Day transactions occur on the 11th, 2018 on the 12th and 2017 on 13th. Considering this trend and the allowance of delivery times for online orders, it could be good to start ramping up your campaigns a week before Valentine’s Day. 

Note that Valentine’s Day will fall on a Sunday this year. Last minute orders will likely come in and continue through Friday and Saturday.

Ways They Differ:

Europe is a huge region, and each country has its own practices for Valentine’s Day.

Spain, France and Italy seem to share a cultural expectation of higher spending for this romantic holiday. In France, women also desire jewelry specifically. On the other hand, couples in Germany and the UK stay on the practical side, with the lowest expected spending of  £83.77 and £49.64 respectively, as of 2017 data. These numbers already give you good suggestions on the GEOs you should be focusing on.

Spending aside, expressions and symbols of love differ country by country as well.

If you’re targeting audiences in Norway, it would be good to include birds in your creatives as the sight of two birds flying together is seen as a romantic sign of finding love soon.

In Denmark, rather than the usual red roses, it is more common to gift pressed Snowdrops to friends and lovers. Men also write gaekkebrev for their loved ones, teasing poems or letters where they sign off with dots instead of their names, making it a guessing game.

The Welsh have a tradition of exchanging intricately carved wooden love spoons that dates back to the 17th century. Different motifs carry different meanings.

In Austria, flowers shouldn’t be given flippantly. Men are expected to pay attention to the details and find out their sweetheart’s specific preferences. It’ll be good to go beyond generic red roses in your ads.

In places like Finland and Estonia, Valentine’s Day also doubles up as Friend Day, where you celebrate friendships as well – this is completely contrary to Italy, where Valentine’s Day is reserved exclusively for lovers.

When optimizing your Valentine’s campaigns, be sure to keep these unique practices in mind and adapt your content to each country specifically. Pay attention to cultural motifs and traditions and bring your affiliate marketing game to the next level.

Additionally, couples aren’t the only audience you can target for Valentine’s Day. There’re many angles you can consider in diversifying your campaigns and maximizing your ROI. Stay tuned for our next article, where we explore potential alternative audiences for this holiday!

Direct Affiliate is a direct advertiser & affiliate network specializing in Europe campaigns. Get top CPA COD Nutra, eComm and Education offers with us! Check us out on FacebookInstagramTwitter and LinkedIn.

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