If you’re looking for a great way to connect and resonate with your customers, I have something interesting to share with you this week. One of our clients recently used social media in a very fun and creative way that caused people line up to participate.
To celebrate the grand opening of Target in Ottawa, Billings Bridge Shopping Centre decided to get busy creating buzz.
Several weeks before Target opened, the mall introduced an Instagram contest to get people involved and engaged. People were encouraged to submit one Instagram photo per week that matched a weekly Target theme. They could share their photos on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram or Pinterest. A winner was chosen each week and was given a $100 Target gift card. How cool is that?
They didn’t stop there. With official sign off from Target Canada, Billings decided to invite local Ottawa bloggers to a VIP sneak peek tour at Target the day before it opened in Billings Bridge. The Billings social media team spread the word and in no time they were inundated with dozens of messages from bloggers asking to participate in this unique opportunity. In the end, Billings invited 25 bloggers who cover a range of topics such as fashion, beauty, food, motherhood, interior design, Canadian culture and lifestyle.
On Monday, September 16th (one day before Target officially opened), these lucky Ottawa bloggers were invited to privately tour the 100,000 square foot Target facility with Lisa Gibson, official spokesperson for Target Canada in Ottawa.
As they walked through the doors, it was clear that these bloggers were excited and felt privileged to be given such an opportunity. They were pretty pumped about getting free Starbucks too!
Chloe Gordon, a shopping blogger who writes for http://chloeblogsbeauty.blogspot.ca/ was thrilled to be included in this special opportunity and didn’t realize the blogger community in Ottawa was so large. “This is a great opportunity that Billings has given us. I’m so excited!” she said.
Megan McClean and Emma Paling of http://www.broketheblog.com/ are starving students who love to write about inexpensive fashion finds. They started their blog in June and were humbled to simply be recognized by Billings as a part of the Ottawa blogger community. “This store has affordable and on trend items. It’s a new place for girls to shop!” said Paling.
Greta Bloskie, Marketing Director of Billings Bridge was more than pleased with the outcome of this event.
“All of the bloggers were amazing. We had different bloggers from all walks of life and the response we received was amazing. It’s not often you get into a store before it opens. A pre-open tour is a first for a lot of people.”
The next morning, the bloggers were invited to a complimentary blogger breakfast at 7am before the official opening of Target. As they sipped their coffee and munched on their croissants in the Billings Bridge cafeteria, there was buzz in the air – especially in anticipation of Phillip Lim’s collection at Target!
The bloggers then lined up with hundreds of people to make their way into the store for a second visit – this time they were there to shop! Billings was kind enough to provide each blogger with a $50 gift card to Target!
Cindy Orellana, who writes for www.whoisarlette.com felt delighted by the two-day experience. “The Billings team has done a great job with the opening. I absolutely loved it. We were treated so well and it allowed us bloggers to connect. The mall really recognized that a blogger’s voice is important. I hope they put on more events like this one.”
I want to reach out and offer my congratulations to Greta and the Billings Bridge social media team – you did a top-notch job! These types of events and contests do wonders for brand and awareness. When you offer exciting, rewarding and fun ways to connect with an organization, people will show up in the masses and feel grateful. It’s proof that engaging with people through social media really does work. Having fun while you’re doing it doesn’t hurt either, right?
After the events, Billings had the genius idea to offer up a Phillip Lim handbag on their Facebook Page. Just take a look at how this simple question got hundreds of people to comment and engage -> Click Here
Tell me about a social media contest or event you have participated in that really resonated with you!