Mar 30, 2017
SAF Sets Date for 2017 Petal It Forward Initiative

The Society of American Florists’ 2017 Petal It Forward campaign date is set for Oct. 11, and SAF is spreading the word to increase industry participation and make it easy for members to plan local events.

The premise behind Petal It Forward: flower recipients receive two bouquets — one to keep and one to share with a friend, family member, co-worker or even a stranger.

Recipients are asked to “Petal It Forward” by giving away one of their bouquets and posting a picture about it using the hashtag #petalitforward.

“The campaign’s key strategy is to generate traditional and social media coverage to highlight the benefits of flower power — the positive impact flowers have on our emotional well being — even beyond the actual recipients of the flowers,” said  Jennifer Sparks, SAF’s vice president of marketing.

SAF’s 2015 2015 Petal It Forward campaign garnered participation from industry members in 44 cities in 27 states. The program generated 213 million consumer impressions through traditional media coverage and social media.

The 2016 Petal It Forward campaign included 262 events in 234 cities in all 50 states plus the District of Columbia, generating more 328 million consumer impressions.

“Our goal is to have Petal It Forward events happening on the same day in all 50 states, which could help to capture even more media attention nationwide,” Sparks said.

Sparks said it’s a win-win for individual businesses who participate: “This program is easy for florists, wholesalers and growers to conduct in their local communities — you can make it as big or as small as you want,” she said. “For little effort, you give consumers the opportunity to experience the scientifically proven happiness that occurs when you give and receive flowers. At the same time, you position your business as a positive force in your community. That makes consumers feel good about you, which goes a long way in establishing customer loyalty. Last but not least? You give a morale boost to employees who play a part.”

SAF provides members with step-by-step advice on program logistics, as well as easy-to-implement materials and resources at

“In order for this to be successful from a public relations standpoint, we need to know where events are happening around the country,” added Sparks, who compiles a list of participating florists holding an event on October 11 to share with the media.

To that end, Sparks encourages members to fill out the online participation form at once they know they’re holding an October 11 Petal It Forward event.