Best Buy's Rewards Members Hop on Stage with Sting - Event Marketer

Best Buy’s Rewards Members Hop on Stage with Sting

DB_BestBuy2_2008 Ex
Year: 2008

Imagine being handpicked by Sting to join him onstage and belt out “Roxanne” during a pre-show closed sound check. Or put on your red dress and hang out with the likes of Courteney Cox and other celebs in a backstage Moroccan oasis while nibbling on spiced lamb chops and grilled chicken kabobs. Sound like a De Do Do Do De Da Da Da-dream come true?

Well, for certain members of Best Buy’s loyalty program, Reward Zone, as well as select employees and lucky VIP guests, it was. Best Buy drummed up once-in-a lifetime experiences like these as part of its sponsorship activation for the hottest concert tour of the summer, The Police Reunion Tour of 2007 in North America, the first concert tour by the band in 30 years.

“When the opportunity to sponsor this tour came up, we knew it would be the event of the year and so we put ourselves in our customers’ shoes and thought, what would our customers actually want?” says Jill Jasper, senior manager-event marketing at Best Buy. “They would want access to tickets, backstage opportunities, opportunities to meet the band and go to a real sound check.”

And that’s exactly what Best Buy delivered at 39 concerts that kicked off in early spring in Vancouver and went through late fall. The retailer secured a percentage of tickets at each concert venue specifically for Reward Zone members, who got first crack at them by requesting a presale code at that allowed them access before the tickets went on sale to the general public.

On top of that, Reward Zone ticket-holders could enter a sweepstakes advertised in Best Buy’s weekly circular, on and for access to the backstage perks, which included entrée into a Moroccan “oasis” decked out with brass lanterns, rugs, pillows and leather ottomans. Brand ambassadors in palazzo pants and embroidered tunics, each wearing an 18-karat-gold Best Buy logo that hung from a dark brown leather cord, greeted guests who sipped on Moroccan mint tea. Traditional Moroccan hand washes and a Moroccan menu rounded out the experience.

“Most of the guests didn’t get it until we told them that Sting and the band early in their career had loved Morocco and played there,” Jasper says. “Sting and (guitarist) Andy Summer’s homes are all decked out in Moroccan style, so once they were there and able to hang out, they truly felt like VIPs. The band used the space for their guests as well.”

More than 3,000 Reward Zone members participated in the exclusive experience which garnered positive feedback via on-site interviews and online consumer surveys: Impressions of Reward Zone membership was 90 percent positive and Best Buy overall achieved an 86 percent positive rating. Police catalogue sales increased 302 percent over the previous year. That’s quite a message—even if it isn’t in a bottle.

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