Refreshing Long-running Events - Event Marketer

Refreshing Long-running Events

When Self magazine took its workouts to the parks this spring it was the 16th year that savvy health-conscious women lined up around the block for a day of bending and stretching beauty treatments and product samples in Chicago New York and San Diego. And in April when Walgreens revved up the engines for its mobile wellness tour it was the fifth year it provided free health screenings to those in need across the land. Though both programs vary in scope and purpose over time each has developed a brand equity and consistent message that has connected with thousands of people annually. Here’s a look at how they keep the magic going from year to year.

“We’ve been doing this for 16 years but every year is new for us because this is an event not only for readers but also for advertisers ” says Yung Moon associate publisher-creative services at Self. “Every year we have new advertisers who are trying it out for a variety of reasons as well as the tried-and-trues that come back because the program works for them. We try to make the experience for our readers and advertisers unique and different so they don’t feel like it’s something we pull out of the closet every year.”

This year Self changed it up with new workouts taught by instructors from Crunch Fitness. While favorites such as yoga Pilates and kickboxing remained on the roster new classes included Movieography an exercise class incorporating moves from “Footloose ” “Flashdance ” “Dirty Dancing” and other ’80s movies and Stiletto Strength a calf-boosting class held in you guessed it high heels.

Ford a longtime co-presenting sponsor of the event showcased the new 2010 Fusion and sponsored the Ford Rebounding Zone a cardiovascular workout with mini trampolines. Garnier and Maybelline offered mini makeovers. New sponsor PureVia sampled its all-natural zero-calorie sweetener atop fresh strawberries and in lemonade. In Chicago a move to Grant Park allowed for better access and parking and celebrity trainer Jillian Michaels of “The Biggest Loser” fame made a first-time appearance. In all three cities admission was reduced from $20 to $15 to be more recession-friendly and encourage women who had attended in the past to come back. (Proceeds went to three charities: Cancer and Careers Fertile Hope and Susan G. Komen for the Cure.) But perhaps the biggest refresher came from new visuals and a purple color palette including a new tent design logo and staging for a more vibrant exciting look and better brand consistency (Precision Event Group Beverly Hills CA handled).

Walgreens is back on the road with a new partner and a new name the AARP/Walgreens Wellness Tour. Now in its fifth year the tour in April launched a two-year program with the goal of providing more than $60 million in free health screenings to adults in more than 3 000 communities. It has grown from one bus to 10 nine of them sponsored by AARP which will give the tour increased access to state fairs community and senior centers and health fairs in addition to the AARP National Event and Expo Vegas@50+ 2009 this October.

On the tour Walgreens-trained medical technicians conduct free screenings in 40-foot customized vehicles. The tests measure total cholesterol levels blood pressure bone density glucose levels waist circumference and body mass index to help in disease protection and prevention. Consumers get a print-out of results immediately and are encouraged to visit a doctor or health care provider to discuss them.

This year attendees will receive free one-year AARP memberships that they can pass on to another eligible adult if they are under the age of 50. Visitors also receive a reusable recyclable bag.

“This is our way of giving back to the community especially when there is such a demand for this type of service right now ” says Flora Ward director of community outreach at Walgreens. “Each year we have enhanced it” (Agency: Marketing Werks Chicago). 

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