UPDATE: This tricolour post was originally published on 6 August 2018 and updated on 6 August 2020.
India will be celebrating its 74th Independence Day on August 15, 2020. For Indians, this day is indeed a matter of pride. A feeling of nationalism emerges from the heart while listening to patriotic songs and watching the waving Indian tricolour flag. Although the festivities will be adapted this year for social distancing, people in India traditionally celebrate by decorating schools, institutes and offices, by playing patriotic songs and organising events. Retail businesses also observe the day by offering tricolour-themed merchandise.
Make tricolour your sales mantra this Independence Day.
For businesses, it is not just a day of pride and remembrance, but a superb opportunity for marketing as well. Many eagerly wait for Amazon’s ‘Great Indian Sale’ and Flipkart’s ‘Big Freedom Sale.’
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6 tricolour-themed ideas to try
You don’t have to be as big as Amazon or Flipkart to celebrate Independence Day in your retail business.
Launch Independence Day collection.
Organise engaging events.
Make effective use of social media.
Traffic signals can be your marketing medium.
Sponsor a local event.
Surprise freebies on all orders.
Scan through our list of Independence Day ideas to find one or two to try this year.
Get creative this year
From sales to tricolour-themed campaigns, every retail business tries different marketing strategies to increase their sales.
In 2019, tiles company Kajaria Ceramics rolled out #DeshKiMitti, a multimedia campaign led by a mega ad film starring Akshay Kumar. The campaign is a reflection of a strong nation that excels on multiple fronts.
Another campaign that was well-received in 2019 is Mahindra Adventure's video depicting the right to knowledge and education for all — even to the remotest parts of our country. Mahindra Adventure urged people to join hands with Project Paper Bridge – Independence Day | Live Young Live Free.
But you don’t need a lot of money to integrate tricolour into your retail business. We have compiled a list of marketing ideas that will help you boost sales this Independence Day.
1. Launch Independence Day collection
Launching an Independence Day collection can help you reap more benefits than you can imagine. Retail business outlets can leverage the tricolour theme to create quirky novelty products that inspire patriotism.
Say for example, if you run a restaurant you can offer a tricoloured food item like a mocktail, cocktail or even a dessert at a happy hour price.
Or, if you are into the clothing retail business, you can have a separate section of tricolour tees with patriotic slogans or images of freedom fighters. Regardless of the type of business you are in, you can always complement your products with gifts like a tricoloured wristband, pen, diary, etc.
2. Organise engaging events
You, as a small retail business, can attract a crowd online by organising events like quizzes and competitions around Independence Day, awarding winners with tricolour-themed gifts. Get visitors excited about the upcoming event by announcing it on all your social media accounts.
You can organise separate competitions for kids and adults.
The kids might be asked to draw or paint something around Independence Day or photograph themselves dressed in a tricolour outfit. The other section can be engaged via an interactive quiz.
The event, if it is a hit, could turn out to be an annual proposition that your customers look forward to each year.
3. Make effective use of social media
Social media is an excellent medium to reach hundreds and thousands of people in one go. Just like the examples of Kajaria Ceramics and Mahindra Adventure mentioned above, put your creative hat on.
Try to create a short video that leaves a lasting impression on the viewers' mind. It is advisable to pick a trending topic, a social issue or something that people love sharing.
Remember, emotions play a significant role in decision-making.
Try to create something that depicts pride for the tricolour. Say, for example, a video in which everything, from hoardings to banners, from buildings to monuments, from cars to public buses, gets a flavour of tricolour.
Moreover, you can host a tricolour-themed photo contest on social media platforms like Instagram, Snapchat or Facebook. Ask people to show patriotism in unique ways, mentioning your profile handle and relevant hashtags. Include some trending hashtags for extended reach and do not forget to offer valuable prizes as takeaways.
It would not only help in reaching millions of active users on social networks but also in enhancing your brand value and increasing sales eventually.
Related: 7 best social media marketing tools
4. Traffic signals can be your marketing medium
Usually, we find kids and women selling Indian table/car flags at traffic signals. Most of us don’t care to buy them unless we have a kid asking for one from the back seat.
As a retail business owner, you can distribute table/car flags for free, with your brand or store’s name inscribed on the stick. You can also hand over the discount pamphlet and the Independence Day event card inviting them to participate in your contests for some fun.
It would indeed be overwhelming for receivers and leave an impactful impression. Most of them would appreciate your pride in your nation and your efforts to create stronger bonds with your customers.
5. Sponsor a local event
Set up your brand’s standees at the venue, have your name all around the arena (even if it's virtual) and if possible get a booth too.
Make your booth a fun place to visit. It can be a selfie corner, a patriotic-themed photo booth or a rapid-fire game around Independence Day. Encourage people to make beautiful memories that they can share on social media with appropriate hashtags.
This way you can append the list of your potential customers, and increase online and offline followers.
6. Surprise freebies on all orders
Who doesn’t like surprises? Everyone does.
This Independence Day, surprise your customers with tricolour-inspired freebies without strict terms and conditions.
However, the twist here is that every time customers shop from your store, ask them to share a selfie with freebies on their social networks with a personalised message, branded hashtag, profile handle and location.
It would not only spread the word but also create excitement among locals. They would be keen to visit your store to grab their share of the freebies.
Tricolour + your business = positive emotion
Independence Day is all about gratitude, being thankful to the ones who made our lives happier and fulfilling. This Independence Day, thank your patrons, families of veterans and individuals for whom nation’s pride sits at the top. Look around the town for people with the highest level of patriotism, appreciate their efforts, invite them to events, greet them with exclusive store discounts and be remembered for your goodwill.
If you manage to win people’s hearts, they will become your brand’s advocates for life.