Tag Archives: events

lastminute.com is behind the times with copycat campaign

9 Nov

Competitions are PR gold because they drive engagement with your target market. I’ve launched a few of them in my micro career – from the Best British Roast Dinner to the Best Dressed Pub – and it’s safe to say there’s no campaign that won’t allow you to bring out consumers’ competitive streak.

But the one that the PR industry remembers – which broke all the rules, offered a top prize, won awards and international coverage – was Queensland’s 2009 ‘Best Job in the World‘. So, when I saw the lastminute.com was looking for a ‘spontaneity champion‘, to indulge in luxury mini breaks across the world and share their experiences with the brand, I was a little disappointed.

There’s no shame in being inspired by other campaigns, but if it doesn’t take it to another level then have you really done your job? (#JustSaying)

lastminute.com’s competition has already been talked about by almost every UK national newspaper, but to add some extra sparkle, I’d promote it in the following ways:

Pack a suitcase
Package the competition up as part of a wider feature with top tips for frequent travellers; travel blogger profiles; and ‘how to…’ articles on spending 24hours in the most popular cities. The content can be run as part of an advertorial within a magazine like Time Out or pitched into a range of websites.

Pin it to win it
lastminute.com is on the right track when it comes to social media, by encouraging the eventual champion to share their experiences, but it could take it one step further by utilising Pinterest.

This story is great, but there’s nothing worse than reading about a competition you didn’t win, so why not continue the celebrations by giving people a chance to win a trip to the destination on a picture they ‘re-pin’?

Talk to the experts
If you’re sending someone on a ‘trip of a lifetime’ every weekend for a year, they’re going to become experts in destination hotspots, hidden culture and emerging trends. So leverage their expertise by hosting a press event at the end the year for a campaign round-up. lastminute.com could go it alone, if they have the budget, or partner with a well-known travel conference and secure a speaking opportunity as part of a sponsorship package.

By inviting journalists and bloggers to hear the stories, and also do a ‘big reveal’ for next year’s campaign, they can keep the brand in the news.

So, there it is. Three ideas to better organise the campaign around the spontaneity champion. Are you up to the challenge?

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Clear your diaries for 1D Day!

3 Oct

October is here. As soon as we know it, it’ll be Halloween, Bonfire Night, 1D Day and Christmas.

Yes you read correctly. Global super-band One Direction announced yesterday that the 23rd November will be officially known as 1D Day, as Harry Styles, Niall Horan, Louis Tomlinson, Zayn Malik and Liam Payne look to ‘give back’ to their loyal fans. Forget the sentiment, it’s PR gold.

To celebrate 1D Day, the boys will give fans 7-hours of non stop ‘behind the scenes’ access to their lives in an streamed webinar, that I guess will be 99% focused on the band’s latest album, Midnight Memories, which is released two days later. And that’s no accident.

It’s a great move by Syco, which gives fans a chance to submit ideas and contribute to the day’s events – whilst making them feel part of an exclusive community (along with the world and his teenage daughter.)

One Direction’s YouTube announcement has already generated more than 999,000 views in 24 hours, so I predict that this online streaming session will break records and / or break the entire internet!

But, for the band, it’s just another stepping stone as they look to take over the world and cash in on marketing deals whilst their stock is high. And it’s working; the announcement has since been covered by the Mirror, the Metro, the BBC and Perez Hilton to name a few.

So be warned PRs. Avoid selling-in your stories on 1D Day. Journalists won’t appreciate taking their attention off the world’s biggest boy band baring all to just discuss a boring press release.

Will you be tuning in for 1D Day?

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A bad relationship means bad PR

9 Mar

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The more I think about it, PR is very similar to an awkward relationship. Not quite there yet? Let me show you what I mean.

First date best behaviour
After a successful new business pitch, you’re bound to have butterflies in your stomach and that’s also how I feel after a first date. Your mind runs away with ideas about the future and you believe that anything is possible. Cheers to that.

But, after the novelty wears off it’s not out of the ordinary for client relationships to become strained:

Keeping them entertained
There’s times when you need to entertain the clients that you’re not particularly keen on. Chaperoning marketing managers to industry events is one thing, but ‘get together’ drinks and leaving parties?

I know, I know. Suck it up – this is a relationship you probably can’t afford to say goodbye to.

They leave their stuff everywhere
Look around the office, in the cupboards and on your desk. When was the last time you saw the original walls? Too long. That’s because you’re drowning in samples, literature and ‘those’ props that you bought that despite the client approving them, they changed their mind once they arrived. But, you’re holding onto them just in case.

You agree with them, even though you’re right
We make our recommendations, we push back and we challenge their ‘no news’ stories. But, if we do it too often they might accuse us of not understanding. So sometimes we just go along with it.

You resist threesomes
Sometimes clients bring in other agencies for you to work with and generally make your life more difficult while decreasing your PR budget. Grrr.

When it all gets too much…
…they leave you for your rival. Broken hearted, you’re forced to play the field and get a replacement as quickly as possible to show them you’re not bitter. Did they care about us at all?

What other ways are clients like a relationship? Send me your updates and I’ll add them to the blog.

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