Throwback Thursday: Nostalgic Valentine’s Day commercials

By Abimbola Mohammed

Globally, Saint Valentine’s Day is a season to show love and affection to families, friends and loved ones. It has been seen over the years as a season for brands and businesses to get old and potential customers to buy from them.

Some brands see the season as a period to launch empathetic marketing campaigns to woo consumers while others launch new products specially for sales and awareness.

This edition of MARKETING EDGE’s Throwback Thursday focuses on nostalgic commercials that ran the TV screens during Valentine’s Day a few years back.


Pepsi launched a fun and quirky digital film with actor and brand ambassador Salman Khan (Indian actor) who encourages youngsters to own their singlehood with SWAG. In its quintessential and irreverent manner, the brand also unveiled a limited edition set of ‘Swag Se Solo’ cans giving its consumers an ultimate symbol of carrying their singleton status on their sleeves.


Gucci – Love Story Zine: There was much to love about Gucci’s Valentine’s Day campaign; the brand released a “zine” titled ‘A love story’ a fairytale-style love story featuring the artistic photographs and creative inspiration of visual artist Ariana Papa demetropoulos, and showcasing the Gucci collection throughout. A story not just of love but of Gucci flair, luxury and artistry, the limited edition zine is available as a hard copy, or digital version via a dedicated website. It’s a confident and perfect merging of old-world class and low-tech magazine, with an up-to-date omnichannel approach.


Cadbury 5 Star – Valentine’s Day Alibi: Indian confectionery brand Cadbury 5 Star is giving singles the best gift ever for Valentine’s Day a perfect alibi to get away from all the romance of the season. Instead, customers can win a chance to go on a holiday to a rented island, renamed “My Cousin’s Wedding”. So when singles are asked the dreaded question, “What are your plans for Valentine’s Day?”, they can finally answer truthfully: “Traveling to My Cousin’s Wedding!”. Of course, the island will be a haven of single life, with no red colour allowed anywhere. To enter the competition, just scan the QR code on any Cadbury 5 Star wrapper. Simple, resonant, humorous, and pure genius!


Flirty tweets turned into more extreme displays of love. McCain sent Heinz a tray of floating french fries to eat in the bathtub after a long day. Heinz introduced jewelry, sharing a gold locket filled with ketchup, showing how McCain dunked its way into Heinz’s heart. New billboards were erected in front of McCain and Heinz’s corporate headquarters in Toronto thereafter.


The on-demand car service kings Uber with their uber loving Valentine’s day campaign titled “Romance On Demand.” Oozing affection with the ideal Valentine’s gift. This love-filled video marketing advert makes it clear that one definite way to a woman’s heart is through a bouquet of red roses. With Uber you can go the extra mile and have them delivered straight to her door. Talk about a romantic gesture!


A heartfelt Valentine’s promotion showing two love birds sharing their first kiss and happily growing old together. Following this intimate moment they morph into a young couple, moving into adulthood until they finally become grey and old but with a stronger love than ever. Kudos to them! The message behind this Valentine’s day campaign is that all good things should last forever. Vodafone sure did hit the nail on the head with this purely intimate video marketing advert.


Netflix used the power of video marketing to hilariously tell a story of a guy who will do whatever it takes to know exactly what his crush is watching. Stalkerish much? This extremely amusing Valentine’s day campaign sure did put a smile on our faces.


In 2020, KFC Singapore and Deliveroo came together and united (pun intended) foodies combining the KFC Bucket and limited edition love rings. The campaign revolved around the concept of everlasting love, with the companies offering limited edition rings to accompany KFC’s Valentine’s Day Combo pre-orders. The handmade proposal rings are made of clay and feature miniature KFC Buckets filled with chicken, crowned with the Deliveroo logo.


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