Mother’s Day is one of those moments when retailers experience a surge in sales and do everything they can to maximize sales before the summer months. According to the annual survey released by the National Retail Federation, Mother’s Day spending was expected to reach a record $31.7 billion this year, an increase of $3.6 billion over 2021. 

About 84 percent of U.S. adults celebrated the annual holiday, a boon for retailers looking to leverage Mother’s Day advertising to maximize sales and increase brand awareness. Good Mother’s Day advertising can lead to a successful retail holiday, while failure to take advantage of the increased consumer spending can lead to lasting problems. 

But what makes a good Mother’s Day ad? What can we learn from recent years’ best (and worst) Mother’s Day ads?  What are the factors to consider for the best Mother’s Day advertising and how to nurture the relationship with customers once Mother’s Day is over?   These are some of the key questions we will help you find answers to in this blog post. Let’s dive into it.

1.  “Shot on iPhone” – Mother’s Day Personalized Apple Ad

In 2016, Apple launched a big video ad ahead of US Mother’s Day. What made this video unique was that it was simple and effective. Apple’s ad features photographs uploaded to social media that have been “shot on iPhone.” 

These photos create a compilation of touching moments between mothers and their children. Apple simply wanted to remind its consumers that Mother’s Day is around the corner by featuring heartwarming photos and nice background music. 

This few second video is a perfect example of how a brand can leverage social networks to promote a feature of its product: its camera functionality. 

2. Maidenform Mother’s Day Advertising Campaign

Maidenform, a leading U.S. manufacturer of women’s underwear, set out to double its brand awareness. So it created a sweepstakes-based campaign and leveraged social channels for its implementation.

The campaign was appealing: users were invited to share a photo with their mother. In addition, they described how their mothers “shaped” them using the hashtag #MFShapesMe.

Picture illustrating a mother's day advertising

This campaign allowed Maidenform to become the center of the attraction and leave an impact in the minds of its audience.

3. Teleflora – A Mother’s Day

In 2018, flowers were named the second best-selling Mother’s Day gift with $2.6 billion in sales. Because a good Mother’s Day ad campaign has to be in tune with current events, Teleflora, as a leading flower delivery service provider, has spent time creating powerful thoughts in its Mother’s Day campaigns.

The brand decided to highlight the difficulties faced by mothers through a video in which it praises the difficulty and ease with which moms work for their families in difficult situations to raise their children. The video has accumulated nearly 20 million views on YouTube. The lesson here is that good advertising should be topical while also conveying empathy. 

4. Pandora Brings Snapchat to Moms

Pandora, an international jewelry manufacturer from Denmark, chose a different approach for Mother’s Day. It got in tune with the kids and used Snapchat. Since the social network is popular with teens, the luxury store encouraged British mothers and daughters to take Pandora-inspired selfies together. By doing so, it crossed generations, while inspiring daughters to introduce something new to their mothers. Pandora was also the first brand in the U.K. to use Snapchat geofilters.

5. DICK’s Sporting Goods – Smart Call-to-Action

Video storytelling can be a meaningful and moving way to promote your brand’s products during Mother’s Day. This year’s Mother’s Day video from DICK’s Sporting Goods is a good illustration. The video tells a great story through the mothers who work at the company, in their own words. 

The video is a collage of these mothers caring for and soothing their children with messages of love, set against a backdrop of sports and game scenes. The brand stands out with appealing calls-to-action on the website’s homepage that offers two options: click to shop or click to see gifts that cost $50 or less. This strategy is a great way to engage shoppers on a budget and increase sales and revenue that might otherwise have been lost.

Mother's day advertising example

6. KFC And ProFlowers Team up For Irreverent Product Marketing

To make Mother’s Day even more beautiful, KFC has teamed up with Proflowers to offer a fried chicken “buckquet”! It’s actually a bouquet that combines fresh flowers with pieces of fried chicken in a vase with a KFC sticker for decoration.

Sure, it’s an unexpected and odd combination, but let’s face it, it’s brilliant. Tasty and sweet, fresh and greasy – this will be the best gift ever for many moms. Plus, both brands are playing with the wordplay of “buckquet”. This Mother’s Day ad will be remembered for a long time.

KFC and Proflowers mother's day ads example

7. Lucit – The Software Company That Leverages Digital Out Of Home Advertising

The term DOOH (digital out-of-home) refers to any digitized advertising display in a public setting. This includes digital billboards, outdoor signage, and networked displays found even in commercially oriented gathering places such as stadiums, malls, and hospitals. According to Statista, DOOH ad spending is expected to reach $3.84 billion in the United States, up from $2.72 billion in 2020. 

Lucit, a software company that has developed an app for digital billboards, is jumping on the bandwagon with a clever and fun Mother’s Day advertising campaign. Lucit offers the ability to get a mom’s picture on a digital billboard in participating areas simply by signing up for the app and posting the image. 

After the past two years of confinement and spending too much time in pajamas and slippers, taking care of the kids, this is a great way to celebrate mom and an amazing Mother’s day advertising strategy from Lucit. 

Picture illustrating mother's day billboard

Examples of some of the most controversial mother’s day ads

Penguin – wrong hashtag choice on Twitter

In 2015, Penguin book publishers didn’t understand the importance of choosing the right hashtags on Twitter. They asked users to tweet them with the hashtag #YourMum. Unfortunately, this hashtag, which also means a slur generally used to insult someone, was taken out of context. 

As a result of this poor choice, more than 7,000 people hijacked the campaign to share jokes. Of course, Penguin marketers increased brand awareness and social engagement, but the flip side is that they didn’t sell enough books for Mother’s Day. The takeaway? Sometimes, a little research goes a long way! Choose your words carefully so as not to create any kind of backlash.

Mother's day ads penguin example

German supermarket Edeka criticized for sexist advertising

In 2019, a German supermarket drew fire from social media users and traditional media commentators after releasing a questionable Mother’s Day ad. Edeka’s video is titled “We Say Thank You” and shows a series of black and white vignettes of incompetent fathers. The video shows some rather graphic content that was quickly panned by nearly everyone who watched it.

The video ends with the line, “Mom, thanks for not being a dad,” and footage of a loving mother caring for her daughter while the father devours what looks like Doritos. The ad was criticized for perpetuating hackneyed sexist clichés, portraying men as hopelessly incompetent and mothers as caring and maternal. 

Predictably, many Twitter users criticized the depiction of men, and some vowed to boycott the supermarket’s products. The video that was supposed to put women in the spotlight turned out to be a fiasco.

How To Increase Your Sales Even After Mother’s Day?

Following Mother’s Day, retailers often experience less traffic in their stores. However, it is still possible to encourage your customers to come and make their purchase at your premises. Below are some strategies you can leverage:

  • Invite your customers to join your referral program

After Mother’s Day is over, you can send emails to your customers to collect their feedback about your product quality and customer service. If they were satisfied with the services you offered them, invite them to join your referral program.

A referral program is a marketing strategy that incentivizes your existing customers to share your brand with their friends, colleagues, and family. For their efforts, referral programs often offer customers rewards such as gift cards, discounts, points, or freebies.

This strategy helps companies easily find their brand’s biggest ambassadors and know exactly who their new customers are, where they come from in order to better market their products. It also lowers the cost of acquiring new customers. If your business doesn’t have a referral program, it’s time to create one. 

See related: What Is Referral Marketing? 6 Ways for Retailers to Grow Their Business

  • Run email campaigns

With an average (ROI of nearly 4000%, email marketing is one of the important strategies for all businesses, whether traditional or eCommerce. Running an email campaign is an effective way to promote new products or services, and inform your customers about various discounts or promotional sales happening in your store.

In order to do this, it is imperative to have a cutting-edge POS system capable of collecting emails from your customers, sending emails through individual vendor accounts as well as through a centralized account used for the entire store. Not only does it allow you to collect customer emails for your future email marketing campaigns, but it also improves the retail checkout experience for customers by saving time.

See related: Holiday Email Marketing Ideas: How to Keep Customers Engaged

Frequently Asked About Mother’s day Advertising 

How do I advertise on Mother’s Day?

There are many ways to advertise on Mother’s Day. But first, it is essential to understand your audience. You can use email and text marketing to promote your products on Mother’s Day. Offer gift ideas, make the shopping experience more convenient, use large displays and product bundling, and take advantage of social media.

When should you advertise for Mother’s Day?

It’s a good idea to start advertising for Mother’s Day at least 3 to 4 weeks before the special day. This gives you time to remind shoppers that the big day is coming up, decide what to buy, and leave plenty of room for delivery time. Also, many consumers start shopping well before Mother’s Day itself. It is advisable to start a little earlier. 

How Do You Promote Mother’s Day?

  • Use additional incentives to drive sales 
  • Launch a Mother’s Day contest 
  • Create a Mother’s Day gift guide
  • Encourage user-generated content 
  • Create exciting content for Mother’s Day
  • Run an influencer-based marketing campaign

How can I be inclusive on Mother’s Day?

Being inclusive is essential to making your Mother’s Day ad successful. For a successful ad, use their words to talk about their family. Talk about all kinds of families, and avoid gender stereotypes, especially racist or sexist language.