Seasonal & Holiday

Q3 marketing calendar 2021

Q3 means summer is in full swing and consumers are ready to spend on clothes, vacations and more. July, August and September are full of energy moments and cultural touchstones that brands can use to connect with consumers. Below we’ve outlined the most compelling events of the quarter along with examples of innovative campaigns.

July 4

Independence Day

Independence Day is one of the biggest holidays of the year. From furniture to food to electronics, retailers are offering consumers the best deals since Black Friday. Although the COVID-19 pandemic put a damper on Fourth of July celebrations in 2020, 2019 was full of innovative and impactful campaigns to inspire marketers. Spirit brand Skyy Vodka and apparel retailer Old Navy both tackled social issues in their 2019 Independence Day campaigns. Old Navy attempted to address the sharp party delineations in the country as we approached the 2020 election with limited edition purple T-shirts to represent the unity of the two parties. The company also pledged to donate $25,000 to Open to All, a national nondiscrimination campaign.

Image via Adweek

Skyy Vodka went the influencer route – partnering with WWE star John Cena for a photo submission contest. Cena and Skyy encouraged followers to post photos of “imperfect” Independence Day fireworks with the hashtags #SparkChange and #SKYYVodka. For every photo, Skyy Vodka pledged to donate $5 to the National Diversity Council. The campaign raised money for a good cause, and Skyy Vodka distinguished themselves from their competitors and fostered loyalty among consumers who are invested in a diverse America.


Back-to-school shopping

Back-to-school shopping is essential for families. Consumers are looking to stock up on school supplies, fall and winter wardrobes and dorm necessities for new college students. However, back-to-school might look different in 2020, as some schools will be continuing home-based virtual learning while others navigate re-opening safely.

While it’s not certain what “back-to-school” will look like this year, retail’s heaviest hitters — including Amazon, Walmart, Macy’s and Staples — will all be running creative back-to-school campaigns designed to catch their target audience’s attention with promises of quality products at a fair price. Macy’s 2019 campaign, “All Brand New,” heavily incorporated social media. Macy’s became the exclusive sponsor of a Snapchat original series, “The Dead Girls Detective Agency.” The series was loaded with product placements and mentions of the Macy’s brand. It also featured a “swipe to shop” activation allowing viewers to nab products as soon as they appeared on screen. Macy’s also started a video-sharing challenge on TikTok through which they encouraged their customers to share their recently purchased back-to-school looks.

August 26

Women’s Equality Day

On Aug. 26, 1920, the United States passed the 19th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, giving women the right to vote. Ever since the 1970s, Women’s Equality Day has been celebrated in the United States to commemorate the occasion. Feminine hygiene products company Always launched its #LikeAGirl campaign to coincide with Women’s Equality Day in 2014.

Always conducted a survey and found that 80% of girls feel pressured to be “perfect,” which drives a fear of failure. And half of those girls feel paralyzed by this fear. Always decided to create a campaign that would empower women of all ages. Recognizing the typically negative connotations of the phrase “like a girl,” Always flipped the meaning of the phrase on its head through its slogan. Its campaign featured successful women and girls in various fields and industries, demonstrating that doing something “like a girl” is a compliment, not an insult.

September 6

Labor Day

Labor Day, the federal holiday in the United States celebrated on the first Monday in September to honor and recognize the American labor movement, is also summer’s last hurrah. Now that large swaths of the population are vaccinated, weekend getaways, BBQs, beaches and picnics are all on the to-do list for consumers. Big-box retailers such as Home Depot, Best Buy and Kohls all offer sales for Labor Day. Pet product retailer Petsmart offered a four-day Labor Day sale, with clearly communicated perks for both online and offline shopping. The time limit creates a sense of urgency for consumers, and the company’s email design is pleasing to the eye – with a red, white and blue theme to express the patriotism of the holiday.

Need ideas for holiday campaigns? Check out our Creative Services.



Natasia Langfelder
Content Marketing Manager

As Content Marketing Manager, Natasia is responsible for helping strategize, produce and execute Data Axle's content. With a passion for writing and an enthusiasm for data management and technology, Natasia creates content that is designed to deliver nuggets of wisdom to help brands and individuals elevate their data governance policies. A native New Yorker, when Natasia is not at work she can be found enjoying New York’s food scene, at one of NYC’s many museums, or at one of the city’s many parks with her two teacup yorkies.