Top three consumer trends shaping Valentine’s Day this year

Valentine’s Day will be fundamentally different this year, restricted by lockdowns and social distancing practices that still plague much of the western world. That said, it is far from cancelled, with several FMCG players flipping the script to release fun and unique products, driven by key themes that emerged in the midst of the pandemic. Carmen Bryan, Consumer Analyst at GlobalData, a leading data and analytics company, provides her top picks:

The Experimental – Pink Candy Kraft Mac & Cheese

“Pre-COVID-19 brought us pink chocolate – a revolutionary innovation that took the industry by storm – and now, after an unconventional year to say the least, Heinz introduces us to pink mac & cheese. Adding a sweet twist to this traditional dish has certainly raised some eyebrows worldwide, but the novelty may just be what some people are looking for after a tough year of strict lockdowns.

“According to GlobalData’s latest survey, nearly *two thirds (61%) of US consumers’ purchasing choices are always or often influenced by how enjoyable or unique a product is, five percentile points higher than the global average (56%). Other manufacturers would be wise to emulate similar launches that leverage this ‘instagrammability’ factor that can be achieved within the home space.”

The Inclusive – Krispy Kreme Love Hearts

“Valentine’s Day is no longer just for significant others, with the concept increasingly expanding to friendship groups and family. The rise in Galentine’s Day is just one example of this and Krispy Kreme in the UK has turned its focus towards this by partnering with Swizzles Love Hearts.

“*Two in five (40%) UK millennial’s – who largely grew up with the iconic love candy – are always or often influenced by how well a product aligns to their needs and personality. Leveraging the ‘limited edition’ appeal, while marketing beyond significant others, makes the launch both exclusive and more inclusive, tapping into consumers’ fear of missing out (FOMO) and a wider target base.”

The Mindful – Fortnum and Mason St Valentine’s Tea

“For those looking for a break from traditional tipsy celebrations, Fortnum and Mason St Valentine’s Tea will make for a great sophisticated and calming occasion. Consumers are increasingly demanding products that cater to both the body and mind, with holistic health trends now more prominent within the industry. With approximately *one fifth (20%) of the US population feeling stressed or anxious, and with health and wellbeing claims being an influential factor for *282% of US consumers, this premium tea, which contains hibiscus – known for its beneficial health properties – and rose petals for a touch of opulence, should appeal to those that prefer simplicity and relaxation.”

*GlobalData’s 2020 COVID-19 Recovery Tracker – Week 11 (December 9th, 2020) – Global, US and UK

*2- GlobalData’s 2020 COVID-19 Recovery Tracker – Week 11 (December 9th, 2020) – Global, US and UK – Combined Responses: “‘Always’, ‘Often’, and ‘Somewhat’ influences my product choice”

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