Valentine\'s Day Pick: 1 800 Flowers Is In Full Bloom

Antony Young

On May 10, moms all around the U.S. will be treated to thoughtful gifts, a Hallmark card and perhaps a special lunch out ... if only every day were Mother's Day! This Sunday represents an important date on the retail calendar that accounts for some $14 billion in sales. Flowers are by far the most popular gift for moms, purchased by two thirds of those that celebrate. Here, a comparison of two florist delivery services -- 1-800-Flowers and Teleflora -- to better understand their media strategies in marketing's very own War of the Roses.

1-800-Flower's 2009 Mother's Day campaign was its most aggressive to date, featuring a strong viral push encompassing online contests, web-based partnerships and blogger outreach. This year they launched "Spot a Mom" -- a multichannel, branded message campaign.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Antony Young is CEO of Optimedia US -- a Publicis Groupe company, headquartered in New York. He is author of Strategies in a Downturn.

As a follow-up to its controversial but successful Valentine's Day spot that ran in this year's Super Bowl, Teleflora built their Mother's Day program around a TV campaig, "Talking Flowers," in which two sons send their mom a box of tired flowers that speak to her. The commercial ends with "Don't send flowers in a box, you don't know what they'll say" -- meant to highlight their difference of flower bouquets hand-arranged and delivered by a neighborhood florist, in contrast to other services (like 1-800-Flowers) that centrally source and distribute flowers.

Flower sales are not exactly in full bloom with sales in 2009 wilting largely due to the economy. As a result, media budgets are under even more scrutiny. Let' see how they delivered.

RATINGS

5 stars Outstanding/innovative

4 stars Highly effective

3 stars Good

2 stars Disappointing

1 star A disaster

Social Media Strategy

1-800-Flowers 4 stars

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Valentine\'s Day Pick: 1 800 Flowers Is In Full Bloom

Source:Ad Age

Valentine\'s Day Pick: 1 800 Flowers Is In Full Bloom

Valentine\'s Day Pick: 1 800 Flowers Is In Full Bloom

Source:Time

Valentine\'s Day Pick: 1 800 Flowers Is In Full Bloom