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Thursday 21 September 2023 Dublin: 15°C
# mothership
The good, the bad, and the ugly of Mother's Day advertising
Some companies get the marketing of maternal-appreciation day very right. Others, not so much…

Innocent Innocent / Twitter Innocent / Twitter / Twitter

HAPPY MOTHER’S DAY!  Had you forgotten?  Don’t worry, there’s still time.

As time passes social media and online marketing is becoming bigger and bigger business, with the aim for most companies being to get something to go viral. Well, to get something to go viral for the right reasons:

Irish boys and girls often have a, well, slightly dependent relationship  with their Mums.

So it’s hardly surprising that the one day a year when everyone’s mother gets to put her feet up is a big deal for marketing purposes – for every entity imaginable from hotels to hospitals, huge firms to small businesses.

Perhaps surprisingly, Mother’s Day is the most searched for of the big three ‘days’ in Ireland via Google, the others being Father’s Day and Valentine’s Day.  In fact, in 2015 it’s not even a close competition:

Interest over time Google Google

And where in Ireland is Mother’s Day most searched for?  Why in Athlone of course. They care about their Mums in the midlands, and so they should.

Athlone Google Google

So, Mother’s Day is big business.

Speaking to, John Ring, managing director with digital marketing specialists Tinderpoint,  described what makes a truly affecting online advertising campaign.

“The most effective campaigns are those which are able to tell a story, something the Irish are renowned for, which makes video the perfect medium,” says Ring.

People need to be able to relate and that’s why the likes of Youtube are key.
It makes sense that companies would make the most of Mother’s Day, because it’s something that’s bound to put a smile on the public’s face and that makes advertising done right all the more memorable.

Ring pinpoints Lidl’s video (below) for Mother’s Day as a brilliant example of storytelling and advertising at their best in unison.

That’s because so many Irish mothers have children who have left our shores, and would love to be home on Mother’s Day.
That mixture of a storyline, a bit of emotion and a humility from the brand – Lidl’s own presence in the video is very subtle – is the perfect combination.

He’s not wrong, as you can see:

LidlIreland / YouTube

So what sort of stuff is to be avoided?

“If you’re telling a story you need to be very respectful, that’s most important,” Ring says.

Anything that seems wilfully hurtful is to be avoided like the plague, particularly on social media where things are so unregulated.
There are lots of people who have lost Mums, who have never known a Mum, who have lost kids, they’re Mums too they just don’t have their children, you really have to be so, so careful.
And any mention of any kind of -ism or -ist is definitely out!

Makes sense.

So without further ado, here’s guide to Mother’s Day marketing past and present, from the:




TempleStreetCUH / YouTube

Johnson's Baby / YouTube


… to the Good


That one’s for sugar-waxing (yes, that kind of waxing) by the way, which is a thing.


… to the not so good


mr. clean Mr. Clean Mr. Clean




… to the awful / reprehensible / completely brilliant


Analcare Analcare / Twitter Don't every change Analcare Analcare / Twitter / Twitter

Happy Mother’s Day to all the Mums out there.  You’re the best.

Mikosyko / YouTube

Read: 14 wonderfully Irish gifts to give your Mam this Mother’s Day

Read: The moment this baby sees her mammy for the first time will turn you into a puddle of mush

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