Valentine’s Day is no small holiday when it comes to retail spending. And for that reason, I am surprised at the lackadaisical effort by retailers to get their piece of the $17.02 billion that will be spent, according to a National Retail Federation survey.
In fact, my unscientific research — trolling Web sites and shopping in stores near my home — reveals that the stores doing the most to sell Valentine’s Day merchandise are drugstores, grocery stores and, of course, Hallmark stores.
One upscale retailer — Simon Pearce — an artist who makes beautiful and high-quality glassware has teamed up with a chocolatier to make a Valentine’s Day offer that is both really nice and quite inviting. The contest is simply a drawing. Consumers may enter by going to the Simon Pearce site or any Lake Champlain (chocolates) retail store and filling out a form. No purchase necessary.
The two winners — one from the Simon Pearce site and one from a Lake Champlain store — will receive one pair of Simon Pearce hand-blown Hartland champagne flutes and one box of Lake Champlain chocolates in a heart box. In order to enter, shoppers must agree to receive periodic notifications from the two retailers. Winners will be notified on Feb. 14.
It’s simple. It doesn’t cost the two retailers much. It’s nice. Since most Valentine’s Day shopping occurs at the last minute, there is still time for you to do something nice for your customers. What will it be?