Happy Lupercalia! Ok, Valentine's Day

Lupercalia was the Roman festival of fertility conducted between 13th and 15th February. Apparently it was a time for men to hit on women. With the hides of newly sacrificed animals. Clothes entirely optional, of course. Fun, fun, fun, eh? Thanks to Hallmark’s marketing adventure of 1913 you no longer need to slaughter Rover or Kitty (or beat up women) and a simple card will suffice to express your love. (Cue for those who haven’t sent their loved ones a token to call Ferns n’ Petals and order that pink teddy.)

Back in college Valentine’s Day was disguised as Rose Day, and positioned as a day to celebrate friendship. Since then of course Valentine’s has made its way into the world’s holiday calendar, despite resistance from traditionalists. A day to celebrate friendship is a fine thing and should be encouraged in this era of nuclear families and friends-like-family. I was horrified when the 9 year old wanted to buy red roses to take to school. Until I understood that it was for her teachers. (Oh, the problems of a mother who hears Valentines and sees Lupercalia).

Brands are jumping into the uncharted waters of V-Day. Borosil with its #firstvalentine campaign celebrates the first Valentine’s Day after the reading down of Section 377 in 2018 and decriminalisation of consensual gay relationships. Read the review by Suma Nair. The Man Company has dealt with “unconventional” romance. And of course, every flower, chocolate and hospitality company has a special offer. The Paul Writer office celebrated with Ferrero Rocher’s special gift pack. Valentine’s Day is a $20 billion business in the US, plenty of headroom here in India. 86% of singles surveyed by BharatMatrimony said they plan to celebrate Valentine’s Day after marriage.

We’re catching our breath after the Bengaluru Brand Summit and gearing up for the Delhi/NCR Brand Summit, co-hosted with Adobe, which promises to be just as exciting with speakers such as Karan Kumar, Chief Brand & Marketing Officer, Fabindia, Himanshu Khanna, India Country Manager, Sitecore, Bhaskar Bose, Country Director, Meltwater India, Madhukar Uniyal, Sales Consulting Director, Oracle Marketing Cloud India and Sridhar Narayan, Digital Leader, Adobe India. Our partners for this Summit are Category sponsor – Meltwater, Media Partner – The Hindu Business Line, Associate Partner – Sitecore. To register or nominate your brand for the Hot 50, please email me.

Work is also afoot for the Digi 100 APAC for which applications are now open. It’s like the Digi 100 which we did for India but on a much larger canvas where you vie for recognition at the APAC level.

On this auspicious occasion we are also inaugurating our new mailing tool from Kenscio. If you’re seeing this email it has clearly worked 🙂 I apologise up front if we messed up during the migration and you really don’t want these newsletters. You can unsubscribe or email me and I’ll take you off.

Upcoming event:
Delhi/NCR Brand Summit