Better Homes & Gardens Unfolds a Mobile Experience
Meredith Corp.’s Better Homes & Gardens launched a four-month mobile program last summer to simultaneously bring its new look and feel to life and take a few advertisers for a ride. The company had been running a mall tour for 16 years, but felt it was time to breathe new life into its event initiatives. “People internally were no longer excited about the mall tour,” says Meredith business development director Amy Levy. “And we hadn’t been focusing enough on bringing our brand to life.”
The 42-foot Better Homes & Gardens Experience truck visited 20 markets May through September. The rig unfolded into a 5,000-sq.-ft. footprint serving up a main stage with summer-flavored seminars and demos, a high performance kitchen with cooking lessons, a gardening area, and a custom work section for do-it-yourselfers. Gift bags with information, samples, and special offers were distributed.
Interesting hook: Different partners took commanding roles throughout the effort. The first half of the tour united BH&G with Mattel for Barbie-themed two-day weekend visits at Wal-Mart stores. And from mid-July through late September, General Motors piggybacked the tour on the road to reach women drivers for its GMC truck division. “We developed two completely different programs, then had to make them all mesh,” says Kristi Kamps, Pierce’s director of strategic marketing. “And then we had to make sense of the calendar we were working against.”
More than 81 million eyeball impressions, 71 million media impressions, and 250,000 direct consumer interactions later, Meredith’s event machine is recharged and ready for more. “We can spend to talk to consumers, but we’d rather spend to talk with them,” says Clark Sanford, brand promotion manager with tour partner GMC.