How brands courted Kiwis on Valentine’s Day

This past weekend again marked that time when advertisers tell us we’d better remind our loved ones of just how much we love them (because we don’t do it any other time of the year) by purchasing expensive jewellery, flowers or heart-shaped chocolates. We thought we’d take a look at what a few different brands got up to, to try and grab our attention on this year’s Valentine’s Day.

Coca-cola made use of its ‘Colour your Summer’ campaign by creating special pink and red cans for Valentine’s Day, and it’s come up with a unique way to engage curious people passing by. 

The company teamed up with Ogilvy and Ikon to create an Adshel/vending machine, which features a touch-screen with red and pink Coke cans lined up in two rows. The user rearranges the cans and then a real can of coke pops out of the machine. The Adshel is currently on Auckland’s Queen Street at the bottom of Vulcan Lane.

  • Check out the rundown on Land Rover’s classy Valentine’s Day stunt here

Whittaker’s has also jumped on the romantic bandwagon, launching a Valentine’s Day competition for a very rare block of chocolate, of which there is only 30 in the world, the company says. The Facebook competition is for the hand-made Whittaker’s chocolate, which is made up of 72 percent dark Ghana with a raspberry fruit filling. The packaging is as you’d expect, dotted with pink hearts and chubby cupids.

Michael Hill has carried the hype over from the Super Bowl by running its ads on local networks over the weekend, in the hope of persuading Kiwis to fork out on some jewellery.

The digital wizards at Resn also got caught up in that loving feeling, and developed a microsite called Wildflower that allows each visitor to share a one-of-kind flower specimen that grows when the site is activated. Users can grow as many flowers as they like, before settling on a preferred one that can then be shared with a loved on social media. 

In terms of popular gifts this Valentine’s, flowers were still among one of the most popular, according to the Herald, where spending at florists increased 15.4 percent in the week prior to Valentines Day, with a hefty $3 million spent at florists around the country. 

However, the week-on-week sales were down 12.8 percent on the increase recorded last year, when consumers spent $3.5 million at florists the week prior to Valentine’s Day.

And it’s no easy feat meeting the demand of flower-buyers on Valentine’s Day. Flower growers need to make sure they can make millions of roses bloom just in time for the day, otherwise they face the potential of huge financial loss. This radio clip from Planet Money details the logistics, trials and tribulations of getting the perfect bunch of red roses to your doorstep.

Jewellery and watch sales also jumped the week preceding the day, with Paymark recording a 41.8 percent increase. 

Spending at bookshops increased by 25.2 percent on compared with the previous Saturday.

Couples also chose to dine out, with a spending increase of 25 percent at restaurants compared to the previous Saturday.

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