To promote its new portable hydraSense ToGo nasal saline inhaler, Merck is activating sampling teams on the streets of Montreal and Toronto from now through March 18. In each city, a team of three brand ambassadors deploys from a branded Ford Transit van in high-traffic areas to hand out samples of the new easy-to-carry individual doses, mini packs of tissues and hot chocolate to warm chilly consumers. In addition, the brand is handing out up to $5.50 in coupons, good toward any hydraSense product. The goal was to hand out 1,250 samples per activation day, and so far the events are tracking double that amount.
“The brand awareness is very high in these markets and they already love the product, so we want to demonstrate the fact that it’s a portable solution,” Marie-Christine Grisé, spokeswoman for Merck who handles the program, told Buzz. “We thought the hot chocolate would be the draw, but we’ve found that the product sample is attracting consumers and the hot chocolate is a bonus.” Agency: Vibrant Idéation & Marketing, Toronto.