25 Days of Awesome

POWERING OUR SOCIAL ENTERPRISE COMMUNITY WITH A SOCIAL MEDIA CONTEST

Online contests can be a great way of building brand recognition and engaging current and potential customers online. That’s why Oliver Russell teamed with fellow B Corps to power social good through a branded, social media contest and sweepstakes.

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THE CHALLENGE

The Oliver Russell team brainstormed ways to celebrate our company’s 25th anniversary in the fall of 2016. Our team bounced-around a variety of ideas, from developing a video game to refreshing the look of the iconic Oliver Russell building. It was imperative that the celebration aligned with our company’s values: to be creative, collaborative, progressive, and socially responsible. As you can imagine, finding a single concept that incorporates these values in a meaningful way added to the challenge, but we came up with a novel solution: 25 Days of Awesome.

THE SOLUTION

The concept for 25 Days of Awesome revolves around a known and beloved entity: an Advent calendar, the type you’re likely to find in many homes during the holidays. Using this idea and its construct of a daily “reveal,” we set out to bring together members of the B Corp community for an online engagement campaign that highlighted their products and services.

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The promotion worked like this: participants visited
 www.25daysofawesome.com to unlock a door each day from December 1-25—just like an old-school Advent calendar. Behind each door would be a prize from one of our fellow B Corps, which visitors would enter to win. This allowed each of our B Corps to have a day where they were in the spotlight, highlighting their products, their mission, and their social impact. Through the collaborative power of their social networks, we thought we could help each company reach a new audience as well. We came up with the idea in mid-October, so with only six weeks to go till launch we jumped into production quickly.

OUR CORE VALUE: CREATIVE

Our design team immediately set about creating options for the promotion’s look and feel. While the notion of an Advent calendar is rooted in tradition, we knew we wanted an identity and digital presence that was fresh, fun, and current. We chose a quirky, hand-lettered logo and paired it with a smaller subhead, “Free stuff from good companies,” to give visitors a quick explanation of the concept.

The next item on our checklist was developing the website and online assets for social media. This is where things took an unexpected and monstrous turn: Our designers created a crew of playfully mischievous monsters to anchor the site identity and provide engaging assets for our social media campaign.

These monsters added character to our frequent social media post and with a little animation brought a distinctive flair to the 25 Days of Awesome website. 

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OUR CORE VALUES: COLLABORATIVE & PROGRESSIVE

As a Certified B Corporation®, we count many amazing companies among our peers. They’re all pretty creative and open to new ideas, so we reached out to our fellow B Corps™ with high hopes of getting them to participate on a pretty tight timeline; we had just two weeks to connect with B Corps and find the right matches for the event.

Our ask: Own one day of Awesome by providing a free product to be given away as part of the event and putting your digital marketing heft behind the promotion.

Luckily when you share values with so many companies, finding a great fit is pretty easy. We were excited to find that our concept hit home with a variety of B Corps with consumer products, including some very well established brands. We quickly locked down prizes from B Corps for each of the 25 Days of Awesome and also created new relationships with individuals at some of our sister companies.

We achieved our goal of curating a diverse mix of organizations with great products that ensured the B Corp message would appeal to a broad online audience. 

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  • OUR CORE VALUE: SOCIALLY RESPONSIBLE

    We build brands for purpose-driven companies. This is the first thing you see when you land on the Oliver Russell homepage. But we try to extend our influence well beyond client relationships, such as helping create brand recognition for purpose-driven companies regardless of whether they’re compensating us or not. 25 Days of Awesome offered us the means to do just that, by sharing the many ways in which participating companies and the B Corp community create social impact. We used the contest as an opportunity to talk about the social and environmental impact our fellow B Corps are creating in the world. 

    MARKETING TACTICS: MEDIA AND PR KIT

    With a new promotion going live each day of the contest, our team created easy-to-use promotional tools to ensure everyone had the marketing tools they needed to run a successful campaign. To aid in this effort, we created a social media guide and PR kit that contained messaging, graphic assets, guidelines, promotion timeline, and a news release. These kits were designed to be turn-key solutions for participating B Corps so that even the busiest of digital/social media marketing teams could easily execute on the campaign. 

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    HOOTSUITE: SOCIAL MEDIA MARKETING AND MANAGEMENT

    While most of the B Corps only had one day’s worth of social media promotion and posting to worry about, our team had 25 days of content to create across each of our brands (Oliver Russell, Social Good Network, and Think Boise First) with two to three social media channels each. Creating content around these channels on a six-week timeline was going to be difficult. After all, we had to fit this effort around our regular client workload as well.

    We used Hootsuite (also a Certified B Corporation!) as our social media marketing and management tool, which allowed us to easily schedule posts across each channel days in advance of the promotion. It also came in handy for monitoring and viewing engagement across all our channels, providing clear and actionable reports on a single webpage. This allowed us to stay on top of the varied aspects of our campaign. We could schedule posts in advance, reply to comments, follow our tag #25daysofawesome, and engage with users who were interacting with 25 Days of Awesome or with one of our partner B Corps.

    GLEAM

    We turned to online sweepstakes mainstay Gleam.io to help us run the backend of the contest. While we could have crafted a custom solution, Gleam’s intuitive design, analytics and promotional tools simplified many of the day-to-day tasks of running the contest. Gleam handled the registration process for entrants, managed daily reminder emails, randomized the winner selection process, and provided all the reporting tools we needed to provide to our B Corp partners. This also freed up time for our development team to focus on creating fun and interactive content to use on the 25 Days of Awesome website and our social media channels. 

    SOCIAL MEDIA

    We set out with the clear intent of exposing as many people as we could to the B Corp movement and to the individual companies that make it a force for good. Some of the participating B Corps had social followers in excess of 600,000 on a single social media channel; others had less than 2,000 total followers across all their social media channels. 25 Days of Awesome offered companies big and small an opportunity to cross promote each other, creating brand awareness for companies on and off their contest day.

    One of the advantages Gleam provided was the wide variety of ways participants could enter the contest. The main entry method was by providing their email address, but bonus entries could be earned by sharing the contest with friends, by following Oliver Russell on Twitter, or by visiting our Facebook or website. This created a flurry of activity--here’s an example from just one day. 

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    Many of the participating B Corps experienced big growth in their social channels and an increase in their overall outreach. These images show the increase in the number of page ‘likes’ a company received on their contest day.

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    Oliver Russell’s social media channels also grew significantly. Our Twitter following rose from 1,601 to 4,005, adding 2,404 individuals during the contest timeframe.

    Our Facebook audience grew from 742 page likes to 1,988, gaining 1,246 new followers.

    This wasn’t a one-way street; participants engaged in a highly positive way. Just take a look at some of the responses:

    RESULTS

    25 Days of Awesome offered everyone at Oliver Russell some unique opportunities. We were able to create new connections with our fellow B Corps, build and execute tactics on a tight deadline without sacrificing the quality of our content, and we were able to create some truly awesome design.

    By the end of the contest’s 25-day run we achieved more than 103,000 total entries and collected thousands of email addresses from users who opted in to stay engaged with us and our B Corp partners. Not bad for a few weeks’ work.

    And on the qualitative side, we received quite a few fun messages from contest winners that were pretty rewarding:

    “Holy $#@t!! This is awesome! And the perfect gift for me :) I've got quite a few backcountry trips planned this year! Thank you!!! Here's my address, let me know if you need anything else!!”

    -Amy, winner of the Fishpeople Seafood prize

    “That is awesome! You have totally made my day!”

    - Alison, winner of a prize from Numi Organic Tea

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