St. Patrick’s Day Marketing Ideas For Ecommerce Brands

St. Patrick’s Day, celebrated on March 17th, celebrates the primary patron saint of Ireland. Despite its origins in Ireland it’s become an occasion marked around the world. And for many brands it’s become a chance to use St. Patrick’s Day marketing ideas to connect with their customers. 

Saint Patrick’s legacy includes building monasteries, schools and churches. And the celebrations honouring him include religious services and feasts. There are also loads of elaborate parades and social events organized too. Across all of these festivities the color green is prominent, and so are images of shamrocks, gold coins and even leprechauns.

Why does the holiday matter to ecommerce businesses? 

Let’s take the stats associated with St. Patrick’s Day into account. St. Patrick’s Day accounts for over 5 billion dollars in sales in the U.S. alone. And consumer data from the National Retail Federation indicates that 49% of adults in the U.S. are planning to celebrate this year. While the celebration will certainly look different with most people planning to avoid public gatherings, there are quite a few (32%) who are planning to have a celebration at home.

With everything from decor, to food, and treats and clothing being needed to mark the occasion, 92% of people planning to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day are planning to make purchases. And this will offer businesses a great opportunity to use holiday marketing to generate sales.

A note on respectful marketing

As with any holiday marketing, it’s important to be respectful when you’re getting in on the fun. Be mindful of offensive stereotypes and make sure that everything from the imagery and elements to your copy in your St. Patrick’s Day marketing is engaging without unintentionally getting into negative ideas. This includes steering clear of ideas around getting drunk or hungover. Sure drinks are had during celebrations, but drinking to excess isn’t what it’s all about. While this might seem obvious, even big brands have made these blunders.

Take Urban Outfitters for example. They sold t-shirts with sayings like “Kiss Me, I’m Drunk,” and even rolled out hats with the outline of someone appearing to be bent over, vomiting. The catchphrase for this one? “Irish Yoga: Downward Facing Upchuck.”

Nike, meanwhile, rolled out a new shoe called the “Black and Tan”. This was inspired by a popular St. Patrick’s Day combination of stout and lager. But what they didn’t realize is that Black and Tan is a militant group  in Ireland. And it’s known for its violent suppression of the 1920 civilian revolution.

Remember, the goal is to celebrate Irish culture alongside your audience. So look for ways to do this without reducing it to being all about drinking. 

St. Patrick’s Day marketing ideas 

So let’s get into it. Here are some St. Patrick’s Day marketing ideas your brand can try out, along with pointers and tips to keep in mind. 

Incorporate green 

This holiday comes with a very simple color palette. You need green and lots of it. There are several ways in which you can do this: 

  • Group together any of your products that have green in them so that there is a thematic display. You can then incorporate these into social media posts, hero images for your site or emails, and so on. If it works well, you can bundle these items together for a St. Patrick’s Day and consider offering free shipping or curbside pickup. 
  • Schedule social media posts and emails that incorporate green in a prominent way. If this is very far removed from your brand’s color palette, chat with your designer about how you can use green without clashing with, or drowning out your branding. 
  • You can also go the extra mile and create a St. Patrick’s Day version of your brand logo to be used on any content related to St. Patty’s Day. You could do something like annotating your logo with things like shamrocks or even just have a green version of your logo. 
  • Another way to go green is to introduce environmentally friendly as well as healthy initiatives like planting trees, saving paper, promoting health and recycling. You can also promote eating greens or going vegetarian or vegan if you prefer that angle for your brand.
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Get lucky 

Because luck is such a big part of this day, you should also consider bringing that theme into your marketing campaigns. Here are a few ideas that you can try out: 

  • Run some special promotions and deals. For instance, you can offer a discount as a flat rate off of any purchase on, or around St. Patrick’s Day. 
  • Ask your customers to take part in a virtual contest to show off how they’re celebrating St. Patrick’s Day this year. Be sure to come up with a unique hashtag and encourage them to post with it. If possible, and if it’s relevant, invite them to show how they’re using your products to get festive.
  • Plan some online contests. It can be as simple as randomly selecting a winner from those who make a purchase on St. Patrick’s Day. 
  • Post some St. Patrick’s Day trivia and then run a contest asking your followers about the trivia. Winners can get exclusive discounts. . 
  • You can also run a lead generation campaign and simply offer a St. Patrick’s Day discount as an incentive to sign up. 

Create a St. Patrick’s Day listicle 

With the pandemic still heavily impacting most of the world, St. Patrick’s Day in 2021 is going to be celebrated at home and/or virtually by most. Tap into this by creating a listicle-style blog with ideas for celebrating. You can repurpose your blog into social media posts, or simply share the blog itself. And you can also add it to your email newsletter.

You’ll want to have a good balance of different types of activities that will appeal across your audience. Here are few to get you started:

  • Movies, documentaries, music or awesome episodes of sitcoms that have a St. Patrick’s Day theme.
  • Suggestions for dishes and treats to try, as well as links to recipes that have high ratings.
  • Ideas for games to play (try to incorporate some that can be played with kids if that’s relevant to your audience).
  • If possible incorporate your products – but if you’ll really have to force it, don’t. Your content will still be associated with your brand and will give you the opportunity to have a nice touchpoint with your audience.
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Run a St. Patrick’s Day OOTD contest

A big part of the fun for many consumers on St. Patrick’s Day is getting up dressed in their favourite green outfit. Maybe even a St. Patrick’s Day themed outfit. Even if celebrations are at home this year, this tradition will continue. So why not encourage it as a fun way to celebrate? And when it comes to giving a prize for the best outfit, you do not have to just pick one winner. You can allocate them across categories or even give a prize to each person who takes part. Some fun ways to theme your OOTD contest are: 

  • Who’s the Greenest of Them All?
  • The best family St. Patricks Day outfits
  • Couple’s outfits for St. Patrick’s Day
  • Best St. Patrick’s Day Hat
  • Most Creative St. Patrick Day OOTD

Even if you’re not a brand that sells clothing or accessories, if you think your team and audience will get a kick out of this idea it’s one to consider. The pandemic has been rough on everyone, and lighthearted activities that create a sense of connection and community can go a long way.

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Use good luck charms 

Luck is a big theme for St. Patrick’s Day so it only makes sense that it’s incorporated into your St. Patrick’s Day marketing ideas. From copy that refers to luck to incorporating shamrocks in your designs, there are many ways to do this. Another way to incorporate luck and give your sales a boost is to include a free gift with each order made on St. Patrick’s Day. These types of fun and heartfelt gestures need not be expensive to make an impact. They help you delight customers and increase the likelihood that they will recommend you to others as well. Rather than just focusing on the 17th of March, consider making it a promotion that lasts a few days. This will give you a bit more time to promote your offers and engage with your customers.

Use video marketing 

There is no doubt that video marketing is incredibly effective for any marketing campaign. St. Patrick’s Day is not an exception. Here are a few ways you can add video content to your St. Patrick’s Day marketing: 

  • Creative behind-the-scenes videos with a St. Patrick’s Day theme. Show your team working on your St. Patrick’s Day themed products or deals and getting them ready to ship. 
  • Interview your employees and ask them to talk about how they’ll be celebrating this year. This will help people feel more deeply connected to your brand. 
  • Ask customers to try out your St. Patrick’s Day themed products and to also share their reactions on social media with a special hashtag.

Get creative this St. Patrick’s Day 

With St. Patrick’s Day just around the corner, you might be wondering whether you can still get in on the fun with a few St. Patrick’s Day marketing ideas. And the answer is yes! Your St. Patrick’s Day marketing can be as simple or complex as you’d like. But if it’s a holiday that resonates with your target audience be sure to think about at least adding some related content to your social feeds, and pulling together some promotions. It could be a great opportunity to connect with, and delight, your customers.