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Global Promotional Holidays You Should Know

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Are you sure you’re leveraging the right promotional holidays for your fashion business?

What does your retail calendar look like? It’s impossible to hold promotions for every holiday that comes by – and we certainly don’t recommend you try. But if you’ve only been leveraging the usual suspects (like Christmas and Valentine’s Day), you could be missing out on some serious opportunities to strengthen your brand and improve your bottom line!

Every time you market to an audience in the U.S., you’re targeting a group that includes people who don’t live here, people who live here part-time, Americans who emigrated from other countries and citizens who were born and raised in the U.S.A.. For example, if you run an ad campaign on Facebook targeted to any market in the U.S., you’ll reach a similarly diverse audience. Your options will be “everyone in this location”, “people who live in this location”, “people recently in this location” and “people traveling in this location”. As a result, you’ll find that many of your potential customers celebrate a number of holidays that fall outside of our country’s traditional festivities.

Read on to learn more about the top promotional holidays often overlooked by American fashion, why they’re important for the retail industry and how they can boost your business.

Singles’ Day

Singles’ Day is one of the newer retail celebrations on the planet. Call it the opposite of Valentine’s Day, it was created at Nanjing University in the 90’s to give single people a day to celebrate their romantic statuses – or lack thereof. Alibaba started hosting huge, Black Friday-like sales on this date in 2009, and today it’s become a global phenomenon with other retailers joining in on the action.

Why should you care? Alibaba’s sales alone on Singles’ Day 2017, amounted to over $25 billion worth of goods sold! The holiday cleverly created on 11.11 (representing four single figures), is a great way to tap into a rapidly growing Chinese population – including Chinese Americans, Chinese travelers and a global Chinese market. In fact, savvy shoppers of various nationalities joined the Singles’ Day action this year. For the Americans who participated, it was as if they’d gained another Black Friday.

China is home to an ever-expanding middle class and sees new millionaires made each day. And even businesses outside of the mainland stand to gain. Chinese consumers have a penchant for shopping apparel, accessories and other goods as they travel, with an increase in luxury purchases abroad moving up by 10% in 2015 and overseas travel increasing by about 32%, according to Bain & Company. This is mostly thanks to Daigou, a cultural phenomenon where personal shoppers jet set across the globe to return to China with luxury products for clientele.


While it seems as if Christmas is the biggest annual holiday, a few minutes of research will prove there are even bigger holidays celebrated around the world! Surprising, right? As we take the time to address and market to different national, ethnic and cultural groups, holidays like Ramadan come into view. Ramadan, a Muslim holiday, is a month-long affair marked by prayer sessions, feasts and fasting.

Christmas is celebrated by Christians but also by legions of non-Christians too, a population including 9 out of 10 Americans. That’s undeniably huge, but the numbers get bigger. Ramadan is celebrated by approximately 1.8 billion people on the planet (as of 2015 and determined by Pew Research Center data on the number of Muslims in the world). In today’s global marketplace, these figures are hard to ignore.

Do you ever skip Christmas season promotions for your fashion business? So why miss out on an even bigger promotional opportunity?

This year, Ramadan runs from May 15 to June 14, 2018.


Ramadan closes with Eid, a joyful festival officially marking the end of fasting with feasts and celebrations. It also happens to be a positive and appropriate time to tie in retail sales promotions- something you would see everywhere in a shopping destination such as Dubai but may never see here in the U.S. Not convinced? I read one particularly stunning figure about this year’s retail sales in The National, a publication from the UAE. The general manager of luxury department store, Tryano, in Abu Dhabi’s Yas Mall alluded to sales increases of up to 400% from comparable dates LY 2016!

Eid 2018 starts the evening of June 14 and ends of the evening of June 15.

Boxing Day

There’s yet another big holiday during the traditional season! Though it originated in the UK, Boxing Day is also huge in places like Australia and Canada. It’s a significant retail and cultural celebration and an official bank holiday that takes place the day after Christmas.

If you’re selling online, you’ll definitely reach these audiences but they’re present stateside too. Not including travelers, there were over 90,000 people of Australian heritage living in the U.S. in 2013, and 800,000 individuals of Canadian roots in 2012. Factor in the considerable population of British expats stateside and you’ve got a major market to work with. Even the fact that it takes place the day after Christmas can be a wonderful draw for customers outside of the tradition. Play into shoppers’ curiosity, incorporate storytelling and draw them into the experience of something new.

Have you been using precious resources to promote and celebrate the likes of National Donut Day? Take the time to work with promotional holidays that are a lot more meaningful to your customers – and your bottom line. You’ll delight consumers who already follow the tradition as well as shoppers who’ll appreciate the chance to learn something new – while snagging a great deal.

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