Mardi Gras Marketing Ideas to Make Sales Float High!

Mardi Gras is upon us and there’s no reason your sales shouldn’t be fatter than Fat Tuesday! If you’re looking for Mardi Gras marketing ideas, then welcome to the fun! Get inspired by our Mardi Gras symbols and meanings, Mardi Gras promotional items and much more! It’s high time to get your branding in on the masquerade balls and Bourbon Street action. Let’s roll! 

What Is the Celebration of Mardi Gras?

We know Mardi Gras means fun—lots of FUN. But how did this event become so amazingly celebratory, including as it does so many family-friendly events during the day, followed swiftly as the sun sets with zany craziness, streets being danced in, and hair being let down? Your Mardi Gras promotional items and marketing ideas are sure to be on target and hit harder with a little background. Let us begin! 

Mardi Gras is rooted in Catholic, Christian, Creole, and Cajun traditions. It starts on Fat Tuesday (Mardi Gras means “Fat Tuesday” in French), which is the final day before the beginning of Lent. Lent lasts 40 days (some might say, 40 long days) during which Christians atone for their sins before Easter by sacrificing something that they really, really, really like—like chocolate, coffee, candy, screen time, or social media. The list is endless and the struggle is real! So, it stands to reason that just before the suffering (er, atonement) starts, a final celebration of all that’s excessive is in order. More food! More fun! More beads, bright lights, dancing, and drinking! And, it stands to reason, more Mardi Gras promotional items!    

What Are Mardi Gras Symbols and Meanings?

From parade routes to color ways, here are key signs that it’s time to party:  

Parades: Parades and balls are an integral part of the celebration of Mardi Gras in New Orleans. Parades are organized by social clubs called “krewes” and each year, a “king of the carnival” is elected. In addition to daily parades, balls are hosted throughout the holiday. Some balls require months of preparation, including dress fittings, and most are by invitation only. Parades and balls are sometimes masquerade (or masked), adding a mysterious, formal, and sometimes mischievous element to the festivities. 

Colors: Since 1892, the colors of Mardi Gras are purple, green, and yellow or gold. Purple represents justice, green symbolizes faith, and gold represents power. Sounds as regal as the holiday, doesn’t it? 

Symbols: The primary symbol is the ubiquitous fleur-de-lis (“lily flower”). This decorative design has been popular for centuries in European countries, especially France, where the symbol represents Catholic saints of France, including the Virgin Mary and Saint Joseph.   

Food: With Mardi Gras come festive food and beverages. Most popular among them are jambalaya, gumbo, red beans and rice, king cake, and the Sazerac cocktail. 

  • “King cake” refers to the Biblical story of the three kings who brought gifts to Baby Jesus. Part coffee cake and part cinnamon roll, decadent king cake is filled with fruit and sweet cheese, and iced in yellow, green and purple.
  • Sazerac mixes whiskey, sugar, bitters, and absinthe (watch out!). Fun fact: the cocktail was named after the favorite brandy (that would be Sazerac) of the drink’s inventor, Creole-based Antoine Peychaud. Over the years, brandy changed to whiskey, but the end result is the same: good times are a rollin’!

What Are the Best Mardi Gras Marketing Ideas?

Everyone loves a party, and your small business will benefit from attaching itself to the fun and good spirits of the Mardi Gras holiday. Whether purple cookies and plastic beads for kids, or a masquerade party for employees and special clients, Mardi Gras offers a great opportunity to share good cheer. Some winning ideas: 

  • Take One! Offer a gift with purchase or customized giveaway at your customer service desk, cash register, or reception desk. See our suggestions below for cost-effective, fun freebies that remind customers of the holiday, and your company.
  • Parades in the Parking Lot: Partner with businesses in your building or on your block to host a Mardi Gras parade of your own. Vote on best Creole dish, best costumes, best beads, or best masks.
  • Direct Mail Discount: Offer a coupon or special offer during Mardi Gras dates (in 2022, those would be February 23 through March 1). Send your offer via mail and include a festive Design Wrap pen, a customized wooden nickel, or another USPS-friendly freebie.

I Need Awesome Mardi Gras Promotional Items and Giveaway Ideas!

Whether you’re tossing a promotional plush toy to your local parade participants, or distributing personalized pen sets to attendees of your Mardi Gras masquerade ball, these Mardi Gras giveaways are sure to get your clients feeling festive and thinking about your business: 

Collapsible Arctic Foam Can Cooler: The drinks must stay cold and this can cooler is up for the challenge. Choose a bright color and make your logo the life of the party. 

16 oz. Ava Stadium Cup: Whether the contents are cold water or a cold beer, parades and stadium cups go hand in hand. Get your brand in those hands with this brightly colored, low-priced cup.  

Surf Bottle – 20 oz. – Promotional Sports Bottle – Push/Pull Cap: Mardi Gras fun runs (and really, all Mardi Gras fun) require lots of hydration. That’s where you and your branding come in, with this translucent colored, reusable water bottle. 

Classic Deluxe Bottle Opener: Bar tools, masquerade balls, and your branding are a good match this Mardi Gras. Customize this quality bottle opener with your Mardi Gras messaging and advertise all year long.   

Vinello Stemless Wine Glass – 12 oz: For the elegant revelers, this customized stemless wine glass is a must. No splashing on the float, folks!  

Mood Bracelet: Keep track of your “krewes” with these color-changing bracelets, personalized with your messaging.  

Whistle with Coil: Kids, adults, and masqueraders of all kinds need a whistle on their wrist in case of Mardi Gras excitement that a mere squeal cannot express. Personalize this whistle and keep your name on the wrists of customers, students, and team members.  

Eco Rubberized Sunglasses: Parades are bright and these shades are cool. Distribute these at your Mardi Gras-themed party or outside event. 

Good Value™ Front Runner Cap: Lest good times the night before mean hair that’s not quite ready for the next morning’s parade, this personalized baseball cap will cover every head and advertise your small business as well.  

Let the Good Times Roll!*

*Or as we say from the floats on Bourbon Street, “Laissez le bon temps rouler!”

We suspect the charm and lasting appeal of Mardi Gras has to do with the fact that there is something for everyone to enjoy at this most long-lasting, far-reaching affair. This gives you myriad Mardi Gras marketing ideas from which to choose. Enjoy the holiday and spread the cheer to the customers and team members who keep YOUR spirits (and revenue) up every day of the year. 

Karleen Wise Andersen

From marketing tips to product recommendations, I’m here to help small businesses be their best.

Recent Posts

Small Business Highlight: Pixel Flex Design Studio

Wondering how to turn creative talents into a thriving career? Tim Lum, owner of design studio Pixel Flex, did just…

6 days ago

7 Best Drawstring Bags for Every Occasion

When it comes to promotional products, you can never go wrong with a custom bag—especially a versatile drawstring style. Drawstring…

7 days ago

The Small Business Holiday Checklist

Though the holiday season is fun and exciting, it can be stressful if you’re a small business owner—after all, it’s…

4 weeks ago

Best Laser Engraved Gifts for Top Drawer Branding

If you’re looking to add your imprint to a custom promotional product, laser engraved gifts are a strong option. Find…

1 month ago

Owner & Pet Approved! Best Pet Marketing Strategies

According to Forbes, 66% of American households own a pet—so marketing to pet owners can have serious payoff.1 And even if…

1 month ago

What Is a Quill Pen: History, Uses & More

From monumental documents to the Harry Potter series, we’re guessing you’ve seen a feather pen or quill pen in action…

1 month ago