As Valentine's Day peers it's heart around the corner, guys and gals around the world frantically scour their hearts and their minds for the most romantic ideas about how to create the perfect Valentine's Day moment. A fireside date filled with chocolate covered strawberries, a homemade lobster ravioli in a brandy cream sauce, and the crackle of wood and fire harmoniously illuminating your smiles and burning your passion. Reservations at a quaint French cafe, savoring the finest cheeses imported from Europe while sipping a $75 bottle of Cabernet Sauvignon, and Hank Jones-like piano delicately filling your ears. Ordering roses from 1-800-FLOWERS.com and texting "I <3 you" on your way home from work. Sending an e-Card with a dancing heart, saying things like, "In case you're heart of hearing, I said I love you!" or "Your love keeps my heart pumping."
Wait, what? 1-800-FLOWERS.com? Text message and e-Card? What's romantic about that?
According to the latest survey results from the eBillme Online Spending Index, 23% of consumers indicate they plan to shop online for their sweetheart, with 9% saying they will spend more online in 2010 than in 2009. eBillme Online further revealed that 50% of males and 45% of females are "unsure" about the gifts they will be giving their other half this year.
With 1/4 of the market's mind set on Internet purchasing and half of both sexes iffy about their beloved's Valentine's Day wishes, how will these flightless lovebirds decide and where will they turn?
Online Valentine's Day florists are encouraging the love struck to keep their business blooming this Valentine's Day by advertising to a specific audience: the busy bee. AmericanFloralDistributors.com has created a marketing campaign aimed directly at these go-getters, offering two dozen roses and FREE Valentine's Day delivery. 1-800-FLOWERS.com is also getting involved with Valentine's Day specials starting at $29.99 and FREE guaranteed Valentine's Day delivery.
While great news for the e-Commerce industry, these projected spending numbers along with the skeptical shoppers will undoubtedly result in purchases dictated by major corporations. The classic bouquet of roses and heart shaped box of chocolates will most likely end up on the doorstep this February 14th, continuing the Valentine's Day cycle.
But what's wrong with this?
A bouquet of roses and a box of chocolates is always a treat for the eyes, ears, nose, and most importantly, the heart. But when Valentine's Day lovers expect this, and only this, is when the magic of the romantic holiday dies.
Valentine's Day is supposed to bring out our most creative side and our most sensitive side. Maybe it's just me, but I don't see the romance in spending 3 - 5 minutes pressing a button to order $125 roses, while having someone else deliver these roses to your house.
I understand technology has made a drastic change in our social norms and our day-to-day activities. I also understand that technology has made it easier to purchase anything online, and have these items delivered to our doorstep with little to no work. It's when this technological love trap defines what love should look like, and is considered appropriate Valentine's Day behavior, is where I draw the line. Technology should be there to assist us with our romance, not become our romance.