Archive for promotions

Use Your Resources

Posted in Experiential Marketing, General Marketing, Promotional Events, Social Media Marketing with tags , , , , on August 18, 2011 by caitlineoconnor

The key to successful guerrilla and event marketing these days is no longer just executing a successful event, reaching a large amount of people at the event or promotion and influencing them with your brand. These days, it’s much more than that. Social media marketing and mobile are growing so fast there are so many avenues you must hit and can use to your advantage. Facebook and Twitter are the key players but there are so many more growing niche avenues that can be used with the growth of apps.

I recently worked a guerrilla marketing stunt for the promotion of the movie 30 Minutes or Less. We drove around in a food truck giving away free pizza, free pre-screening movie passes, t-shirts, hats and posters outside of nightlife spots. On top of this, we tweeted our location with the hashtag #30morl so others could follow and encouraged people to check in on Foursquare to unlock the 30 Minutes or Less badge. While Twitter was a huge part of the campaign, other apps  and websites had to be utilized as well such as and SF Fun and Cheap. With the growth of smartphones, these can be used and updated on the fly. It’s exciting how many resources are out there today for reaching the right demographic and finding the right hot spots. Success no longer just depends on  influencing those at the event, it now depends on utilizing all of your resources to find the right spots, reaching more people who would otherwise not join in, and making the conversation last.


The Art of Communication

Posted in General Marketing with tags , , , , , on October 27, 2010 by caitlineoconnor

When you have about 5 seconds to stop a person in their tracks and have them listen to you, the right non-verbal and verbal communication skills are crucial. By working events and promotions over the years, I have gained vast amounts of insight into what works and what doesn’t work. What I’ve discovered over and over is that it is all about positive energy.

  • Being aggressive doesn’t work. When you are overly aggressive, you look desperate. People want to feel as if they are making their own decisions and not being forced to listen to you. People don’t want to feel threatened. Instead of being aggressive be approachable and amiable.  Be confident but not aggressive
  • Along the same lines, people don’t want to be hassled. Everyone is busy, and nobody wants to feel like they are being conned into spending money. Instead of hassling someone, simply be a person they want to talk to.
  • Smile. This is probably the simplest thing to do. It will not only make you feel better, it will attract others to you.
  • Look as if you are having fun. People want to be around happy people. If it looks like you are having fun, people will subconsciously think that if they talk to you, they will be having fun as well.
  • Develop a general interest in people. What better way to look as if you are having fun than by actually having fun. People are generally  interesting, funny and exciting. Cherish the fact that you work in a field where you can interact with people all the time.
  • Don’t act as if it’s a big deal if people don’t want to talk to you. Sometimes, no matter what, some people just aren’t going to want to talk to you. Simply smile and let them be on their way. Other people are watching you and will notice how you react.
  • Emit warmth. When you think positively about people, it shows. Don’t be afraid of people and develop a feeling of warmth.

The most important communication tool is trust. How can you get someone you don’t even know to trust what you’re saying and listen to you? emitting positive energy. When you think positively, everything else will follow. Your body language, tone of voice and your general demeanor are all extremely important but they will take care of themselves if you think positively and are sure of yourself.

Campbell’s Soup Promotion- Brand Repositioning

Posted in Experiential Marketing, Promotional Events with tags , , , , , , on October 25, 2010 by caitlineoconnor

A little while ago I worked on an experiential event for Campbell’s Soup. Rather than marketing the soup itself, Campbell’s repositioned them self by marketing the fact that you could cook with Campbell’s Condensed Soup. The event was quite different from most sampling events because the event staff made roast beef sandwiches out of a mobile branded truck with a full kitchen inside. The event was half guerrilla, and half of the spots were planned. We passed out samples of the sandwiches along with recipes to people on the streets of Boston.

Brand repositioning is an extremely challenging tasks. Changing a consumers view on a brand is harder than getting the brand in their head in the first place.  Using an experiential event to reposition a brand is a good idea because it gives consumers direct contact with the “reposition”.  Also, Campbell’s went about it the right way by broadening their reach rather than trying to change the view of existing consumers. By repositioning, Campbell’s also differentiated them self from competitors.

Will Blackberry’s Experiential Marketing create Loyalty?

Posted in Experiential Marketing, Promotional Events with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on August 12, 2010 by caitlineoconnor

I recently read an article about how Blackberry users are running out of loyalty. The article stated that “while 89 percent of iPhone owners plan on getting another iPhone, and 71 percent of Android buyers plan to re-up, only 42 percent of BlackBerry owners plan to stick around”.

Around the same time I read that article, I was in the middle of working a month-long gig promoting Blackberry. The marketing that Blackberry has been doing recently is pretty unique and  it shows how Blackberry is trying to stretch their demographic and create brand loyalty. The two different promotions I was working were at the popular downtown bars in Boston as well as the Black Eyed Peas Tour. Both events, which were run by different marketing companies,  consisted of educating and encouraging Blackberry users to use BBM (which stands for Blackberry Messenger, a feature that is exclusive only to Blackberry). I found it interesting that Blackberry is extending their demographic to include young adults in a nightclub setting when their primary target has always been business professionals; a smart move in my opinion if Blackberry wants to keep up with the competition. I also found it interesting that Blackberry’s goal was to make sure their users become accustomed to using BBM. This is also a smart move because it will create loyalty and it is Blackberry’s biggest differentiation from other smartphones. Along with creating loyalty, the promotion of BBM will also encourage users to pressure their friends to get Blackberry so they can chat through the messenger.  The only fault with the marketing, in my opinion, was the timing. This type of extensive experiential marketing should have been done about a year ago, before the other competitors were launched. I think Blackberry realized they were losing loyalty a few months too late and could have held on to some of its younger users if these events were done earlier.

Some Pictures of the bar events.. More from the Black Eyed Peas events to come..

Brand Ambassador Resources

Posted in General Marketing with tags , , , , , , , , , on July 16, 2010 by caitlineoconnor

Working in the promotional field can be messy sometimes. You are an independent contractor and basically you are your own business that you run yourself. You must keep track of  the agencies you work for, find and book your own work, be careful not to double book (this can be easy to do when you apply but don’t get the confirmation in time), make sure paperwork is filled out and sent in on time, keep track of when you get paid ( sometimes it can be weeks, sometimes over a month), track down your pay (unfortunately this can be a common occurrence),  keep your pictures up to date, keep your promo resume up to date, know the route to the promotion (since you are always working at different events and venues), make sure you have the appropriate attire, and be able to plan for and react to event cancellation and disorganization on the agency side.  This means organization is key.

The way I keep organized is I keep a hard copy of everything as well as keep it digitally stored in my email. It is important to not delete any email confirmations just in case you need to look back at the details to find out who you should be contacting if you didn’t get paid. I use my phone calendar to write in the events and times that I have already booked. I keep a binder of all event confirmations as well as recap forms, w9s and anything else that needs to be faxed into the agency. I also find it helpful to make an excel spreadsheet of the event I worked, date, payment and agency and check it off as I get paid.

Working in the promotional field can also be a gamble sometimes because you could commit to one gig and then get an email for one on the same day that pays a lot more. My advice for this is to set payment standards for the weekends and only commit to working lower paying ones during the week since weekday work is not as common.

Some resources  I find useful are:
An Event Marketing community that has event marketing job posting, discussion and event marketing news.
All things event marketing and tradeshow. Complete with job postings, the latest news and top agency listings.
Similar to, Promo Magazine provides insights into all things promotional marketing.

Fellow BA’s..What are your tips?

All State Insurance Promotion

Posted in Experiential Marketing, Promotional Events with tags , , , , , on June 30, 2010 by caitlineoconnor

I recently worked a 9 day long promotion for All State Insurance at Laconia Bike Week. One of the main things that interests me about promotions, and marketing in general, is the chance to get involved in and having to appeal to various subcultures. Culture is the reason I am so highly interested in marketing and travel and it is great when I can combine the two.

Bike week was an experience to say the least. There were bikers who attended from all over the U.S. and Canada and I got the opportunity to talk with a large majority of them. Our job at the All State Tent consisted of collecting peoples’ information and entering them in to win a Dave Perewitz Motorcycle.

On the consumer side of things, the All State Insurance promotion was a success in my opinion. We reached approximately 7000 different people, many of which were unaware that All State insured motorcycles .  The tent that All State had set up included complimentary massage chairs, free shoe shines, a mobile museum with the history of motorcycles, an emcee, an opportunity to chat with Dave Perewitz himself and a chance to win one of his bikes.  Experimental marketing at its finest, in my opinion.

The one qualm I had with the whole promotion is the way it was managed in terms of promotional staff. 9-10 hour days in the summertime sun, on your feet, for 9 days straight is very exhausting no matter how energetic a person you are. This poses a productivity problem because, in order to make a good impression on people you must be as upbeat and happy as possible. I do not believe that longer hours necessarily mean you will reach more people than you would if the hours were shorter and your staff were more energetic and upbeat. However, the girls I did work with were the best for the job. They were hard workers, upbeat and energetic for sure.

All State Promo Model Lauren decked out for Flag Day!

The Perewitz motorcycle All State was giving away.

ACCC Promotion

Posted in Promotional Events with tags , , , , , on June 10, 2010 by caitlineoconnor

The other day I staffed a quick one day event for American Consumer Credit Counseling. It has been quite a while since I have worked such a simple, quick promotion. Honestly, since it has been so long , I almost wrote them off as ineffective and not important.  I was skeptical at first because our job was to pass out pens with the website on them. Pens? Who needs pens?  That doesn’t seem very cool, and in my mind nobody would take them.. however to my surprise everyone wanted a free pen and we couldn’t give them out fast enough.

The most effective part of this promotion was that we were positioned outside of a metro station next to the free Metro newspaper which had an ad for ACCC on the back where people could fill in the blanks with their expenses.  We ended up giving about 1,500 pens in only 3 hours.. not a bad reach if you ask me.