Pink and Red: Valentine’s Day Ads

Whether you love it or hate it, Valentine’s Day is here once again. From a design perspective, this can be a challenging holiday, as there are a limited number of symbols or images and colors used. And we recently heard a bit of proactive advice from one of our clients: we should be careful not to overdo a theme because it can undermine the effectiveness of an ad.

Below are some of the designs we completed for clients in anticipation of this day dedicated to showing those we love how much we care.

Flowers are one of the most common gifts given on Valentine’s Day. I just heard a statistic on the news that two-thirds of the flowers purchased by men are given to their wives or girlfriends. One-third are given to their mothers! Anyway, featuring the flowers in this ad makes it eye-catching and bright. You can see here the typical approach of using reds and pinks on this holiday (purples are also seen although less frequently).

Valentine's Ad for Flowers

When it comes to gifts, the most desirable is jewelry for Valentine’s Day. This ad does a  nice job of featuring the products, as the expected heart is in the bracelet and necklace rather than in the graphics (although there are two small hearts on the gift card). I particularly like the big pink bow to draw the viewer in and point them to the jewelry. Another item to note is that you see a lot of script-like fonts in these designs, as if the messaging were hand-written.

Valentine's Ad for Jewelry

It wouldn’t be a good Valentine’s Day if there weren’t a special, romantic outing planned. In this ad, the image might make a male viewer think, “Wow, I’d love it if my significant other gazed at me that way more often! Let me make a reservation right now.”  The holiday theme is advanced with the liberal use of red, the hearts and the font.

Ad for Valentine's Evening

For some couples, a Valentine’s Dance is a nice outing.  You see here an entirely red ad and numerous hearts. Yet it remains balanced rather than feeling overwhelming because of the different saturation of the colors and size of the hearts.

Ad for Valentine's Dance

I thought it was very creative to stress that Valentine’s Day can be celebrated on any day around the holiday, enabling the restaurant to get reservations over a period of time versus only on Tuesday evening. Besides the incorporation of pink, red and a flowery font, this design brings in cupids, which aren’t as commonly used these days but seem to work here because they stand out from the crowd of other ads with hearts and flowers only.

Ad for Valentine's Weekend

Just as with every holiday, there are effective ways to tie into a theme but there are many, many ads that fail. After reviewing about 30 ads in my local newspaper this weekend and quite a few that Affinity Express created, it’s clear to me it is hard to build a successful design for companies that don’t offer products and services directly linked to Valentine’s Day. But if a business wants to promote flowers, jewelry, candy, other gifts, dinners and romantic outings, you can’t go wrong with red, pink and purple, hearts and cursive fonts—when used judiciously!

Happy Valentine’s Day, everyone. Instead of focusing on romantic love only, I think we should all use the holiday as a start of a campaign to be kinder to everyone!

About Kelly Glass
Kelly has been vice president of Marketing at Affinity Express for nine years now. She drives company strategy and all marketing activities.

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