In honor of packing for my senior year at UD (cue my wish to be a freshmen again), I want to celebrate the lessons that “those crazy college kids” can teach marketers and PR pros everywhere. Here’s how our crazy habits can work for a brand or organization…
As college students, we always find a reason to celebrate. In college, every holiday is a reason to celebrate. Heck, every day is a reason to celebrate. You would think that Cinco de Mayo and Saint Patrick’s Day were actually American holidays. It’s Thursday? We celebrate. Just finished a big exam? We celebrate. The U.S. captures Osama? We celebrate. It’s someone’s half-birthday? We celebrate.
Okay, you get the idea. The point is that college kids are always looking for a reason to throw a party and celebrate life (and somehow we always find one).
When promoting a service or product, finding a reason to celebrate (and ultimately better promote) that service or product is key. Say you’re on the PR team for a local bakery and it happens to be National Peanut Butter Day. Whip up some treats with peanut-butter icing, throw a mini-party, and offer your customers an incentive to come into your store. There’s always a new angle to promote your product or service; it’s your job to be creative enough to find it.
Starbucks & Barnes & Noble are both using the end of summer/beginning of fall months as a reason to promote their products. Here’s how these two companies got creative:
Starbucks “Bring It Home” Campaign: It’s almost fall, which means it’s almost time for the Pumpkin Spice Latte to reappear on the Starbucks menu. (Thank goodness!) Starbucks knows that their loyal customers love their PSLs, so they’re running a contest pitting cities against each other to determine which town will get PSL a week earlier than everyone else using social media. Want to vote for your city? (Sadly, I don’t think Newark, Delaware, stands a chance.) Check it out here.
Barnes & Noble “Textbook Tuesdays” Twitter Chat: As college students head back to school, buying textbooks (preferably cheap textbooks) are on the top of their to-do list. @BNcollege introduced their “Textbook Tuesdays” Twitter Chat on Tuesdays in August from 1-1:30 p.m. Using the hashtag #BNCtexttalk, students can ask any of their textbook-related questions. From renting to buying to e-textbooks to the NOOKstudy, students tweeted and received answers live from the BN team.
How can you celebrate your brand? What other companies currently have great campaigns that capitalized on current trends? Comment below with your thoughts!