I pride myself on creating marketing programs that connect moms with marketers. It's my passion in fact, right behind family and running. I find it rewarding to deliver good results to clients who trust me with their brands. However, every once in a while you hit a home run with a marketing program that sends you flying into the clouds for a week. It's an experience like watching the birth of a baby or completing your first marathon. Every element of preparation, strategy, execution and follow-through collide in just the exact spot to produce the desired outcome. I love that feeling!
A few weeks ago while sitting in the office of an Avon executive, she asked me, "Maria, what would you do with an hour with Patrick Dempsey." Of course, several ideas went through my mind but knowing they had to involve other mothers, I quickly moved to more public thoughts. Celebrity. Mom Bloggers. Social Media. Buzz. Sales. The motivation behind the question was that Patrick Dempsey was about to launch a new fragrance with Avon called Unscripted. Avon was looking for an innovative way to generate buzz among moms and beauty bloggers who would ultimately drive holiday sales. Piecing my thoughts together I suggested that we allow a select group of mom and beauty bloggers to interview Patrick. The group interview would be executed with webinar and conference call technology and each attendee would receive product to giveaway to readers along with a discount code to purchase a bottle on Avon.com.
The team at BSM Media targeted the appropriate bloggers by leveraging MomSelect.com, a proprietary database of over 1000 mom bloggers who have selected to work with BSM Media clients. The invited bloggers included top moms such as: Amy from Parentsphere, Arianne from To Think Is To Create, Beth from I Should Be Folding Laundry, Janice from 5 Minutes For Mom, Katja from Skimbaco Lifestyle, Kim from Jogging In Circles, Michelle from Scribbit, Stephanie from Adventures in Babywearing and Trisha from MomDot.
Each woman was invited to submit one pre-call question for Patrick with the ability to ask others while on the call. Many mom bloggers created pre-event buzz by inviting readers to submit questions they would like ask via the Mom Blogger attendee. Avon sent each attendee two bottle of Unscripted, one to keep and one to giveaway, as well as a media kit and promotion coupon. The one-hour call was preceded with Twitter chatter about nervous stomachs and high school girl excitement. Thousands of Twitterites followed the tweets that went on well after the call had ended.
On the call, Patrick was engaging, down to earth and very interested in feedback from the mommy bloggers. The highlight of my day, of course, was hearing Patrick say the idea to bring him together virtually and via phone with mom bloggers was, "brilliant." Forget any Brandkweek or Ad Age awards, Patrick Dempsey said my marketing idea was "brilliant”; that's all I need. Twittermoms gave followers play by play commentary throughout the call including Stephanie Precourt of Adventures in Babywearing who declared she was breastfeeding while speaking to Patrick. Sales of the cologne began happening before the call even ended and within an hour, the first blogger had posted. Read some recaps of the call from a blogger’s perspective here, here, and here.
The buzz continued on Skype after the call ended with mom bloggers chatting about the experience with friends and peers. Even Patrick enjoyed post-call excitement when he reviewed the Tweets sent during his presentation thanks to summize.com. I suspect he was particularly intrigued by the breastfeeding mom tweet.
The success of this program was based on several key elements. First, Avon invited the right mom bloggers. You learn this by reading their blogs, getting to know them or working with groups such as MomSelect, www.momselect.com. Secondly the program offering had an element of exclusivity. And finally, by offering the mom bloggers a special discount code and bottles of the fragrance, Avon gave the participants something to share with their audiences.
For more information about BSM Media’s Social Media programs, contact Amy@bsmmedia.com