Lowe’s slathers on the romance in Valentine’s Day initiative
“Lowemance” is not a term anyone is likely familiar with, but that could change after Feb. 14. Lowe’s, the home improvement retailer known for its hammers, sheetrock and gardening tools, wants to be a romance destination this Valentine’s Day. In “Night of Lowemance,” the brand is offering couples across the country a chance at a special dinner, toast and splash painting session in select stores on Feb. 14.
“There are some people for whom Lowe’s might genuinely be the most Candyland, romantic place of all,” says Marisa Thalberg, exec VP and chief brand and marketing officer of the Mooresville, N.C.-based company.
The opportunity will be awarded to five couples in 10 of America’s most romantic cities, including Chicago, Denver, New Orleans and Palm Beach, and will include social-distancing protocols. Couples will enjoy a toast and dinner, then a “menu” of paint options from Sherwin Williams for a splash painting they can create and take home as a souvenir.
Thalberg says her team came up with the idea of Lowe’s as a Valentine’s Day destination due to the closure of many restaurants during COVID-19, and the challenge for consumers who want to go out but have to social distance. “Here’s the thing—in reality we have a lot of the trappings [of romance],” she says, noting a garden center with flowers and lush plants and interior dining room furniture.
For those who can’t secure a reservation, Lowe’s is hosting a virtual night of cooking on Feb. 13 which consumers can stream at home. The retailer, which worked with Fleishman Hillard on some PR support, will promote the Valentine’s Day initiative with earned and social marketing.
“At a time when people are craving experiences, for us to deliver them in unexpected, creative, fun and safe ways is a real gift to our customers,” says Thalberg. “The unexpected nature is what makes it fun.”
Thalberg says that the new holiday marketing is yet another way for consumers to see Lowe’s in a different light. The retailer has made a habit recently of showing up in unexpected places—including a curbside trick-or-treat offering for Halloween and a collaboration with designers at New York Fashion Week. Such initiatives helped Lowe’s gain a spot on Ad Age’s 2020 Marketers of the Year list in December.