The Business of Special Days

by BTM

Mon, 02 March 2020

bahrain financial expert

Financial expert Pria MassonTanwar casts an eye on the celebration market.

A lmost every month of the year seems to have a special day attached to it. This month, March, has Mother’s Day and St Patrick’s Day. Through the year we celebrate Father’s Day, Sibling Day, Environment Day, Valentine’s Day, Grandparent’s Day, etc. So, what is the idea behind all this? Is it just coming from people who like celebrating? Is it a creation of companies that gain from you celebrating? Or, perhaps it’s something else?

Like everything else, let’s break down the various aspects of these special days. I will begin with the most pleasant one – the need and desire to celebrate. It’s a wonderful feeling to celebrate anything. To mindfully acknowledge any specific occasion, relationship, milestone etc. It’s what takes the mundane out of mundane life. 

But, how did we get the idea to celebrate these things? It could have begun with some marketing manager in some company engaged in gift-giving, let’s call it ‘Company H’, who realised that there needed to be more reasons to ‘gift’ in months other than Christmas, Eid, birthdays, anniversaries etc. Through a smart advertising campaign, the concept spread. It spread only because that smart company figured out a human need to celebrate, commemorate and mindfully cherish occasions and relationships.

How did it spread so easily? Because it’s a win-win situation for every person involved. The companies that sell gifts or that create ways to celebrate – restaurants, hotels, experience resorts, spas, gift companies, card companies, flower shops – it’s a whole ecosystem of celebration that gains. Thus, as the consumer, we have no reason to reject this because it’s a pleasant experience, it can fit any budget and it helps all our relationships.

The downside of this, as with all businesses, is if you rest your entire business on special occasions. Because, not everyone celebrates everything. So, if the infrastructure you put in place or the expenses you plan to provide an experience over a special occasion, are high, the risk of losses is equally high. Like all products, the ‘occasion’ business also has a price-sensitive utility which is unique. In the luxury offerings, it is high expenses but steady customers. Same for the low-priced offerings. It’s the middle group that suffers the most or gains the most.

Celebrations and special days are perhaps one of the steadiest industries that, in their small way, drive economic activity. Whether the overall economy is thriving or on a downslide, people will celebrate – just as they will marry, have children etc. In fact, usually, when the economy is on a downslide, people look for small ways to celebrate and lighten their lives. 

The impact of a downward sliding economy is that while the amount spent may reduce, expenses continue. They must continue to keep money churning. If people are losing jobs, they may not buy something ‘just because’ but, they will buy when it’s an occasion. If they can, they will send those simple flowers to a parent or a loved one and bring a smile to themselves and the recipient. It’s a business of spreading happiness. And happiness is always in demand. All you must do is package and price it right.

bahrain big daysPria is an Advisor with JEO Management Consultants ( You can follow Pria at her Instagram handle money_cues or learn more about her professional experience at