Public Relations Campaign for Baskin-Robbins’ 65th Birthday

Public Relations Campaign for Baskin-Robbins’ 65th Birthday

Client: Baskin-Robbins

ProjectPublic Relations Campaign for Baskin-Robbins’ 65th Birthday

BudgetProvided Upon Request

Mission:

  • Remind consumers of Baskin-Robbins heritage and history, while promoting the new flavors and flavor equity of the more than 1,300 flavors in the Baskin-Robbins flavor library.
  • Gain publicity for the 65th birthday of the brand as well as for the retiring of five flavors to Deep Freeze, including one of the original 31 flavors, French Vanilla.
  • Create a photo opportunity at brand central (headquarters) and ratchet up internal excitement and engagement by hosting a pink-carpet retirement ceremony for the five flavors entering Deep Freeze.5_Retiring_Flavors

Challenges:

  • Because the five flavors were being retired, demand for the flavors increased and they were not available in stores, resulting in complaints from brand fans and difficulty in using local stores for broadcast segments.
  • Since the campaign coincided closely with National Ice Cream Day, there was a significant amount of other news focused on the ice cream category, including competing brands.

chefwplchsk_7_130395Strategies & Tactics:

  • Timed the photo opportunity at brand central, the press release, and the media pitch to coincide with National Ice Cream Day coverage, putting an engaging Baskin-Robbins story in a position to lead the media coverage ahead of competing ice cream brands.
  • Capitalized on one of the original 31 flavors, French Vanilla, being retired to pitch a compelling news story that engendered public interest, plus consumer and media buzz.
  • Leveraged National Ice Cream Day to secure national broadcast coverage on Fox & Friends, which provided a stage to speak about Baskin-Robbins’ 65th birthday and the retiring of five flavors.
  • Created a satellite feed to disseminate a taped segment to a wider regional network of news stations and secure broader coverage of the story, which greatly accelerated pickup of the story after the national coverage aired.
  • Supported the satellite feed with an outreach campaign to ensure that the story was recognized and adopted by regional and local media.
  • Enhanced the press release with a large photography menu, which in turn improved the quality of the news coverage and the pickup of the story.
  • Scheduled the photo opportunity at brand central to coincide with a yearly visit of an influential group of franchisees whose role is to help communicate brand initiatives at the regional and local level.

2ca4c49ee4d62f1a3dc235383d4719c1Results:

  • Secured a feature segment with ABC World News with Diane Sawyer  (#1 trending story on Saturday, July 17), which was reported John Berman, who added a historical and international perspective to the story and emphasized the wide variety of flavors that Baskin-Robbins offers.
  • Spurred media coverage that included CNN Morning Express with Robin Meade, the Chicago TribuneHouston Chronicle, Yahoo (#1 trending story on Friday, July 16), Fox & Friends, and the Phil Lempert Supermarket Guru Radio Show.
  • Brought the story to the attention of former late night television host, Conan Obrien, who tweeted the story to his followers and received 100 retweets, as well as late night hosts Jimmy Fallon and Craig Ferguson, who worked the story into their opening monologues.
  • Helped drive a bump in sales for the month since the only difference in the marketing strategy over that timeframe was the major national public relations campaign being executed.
  • Generated more than 105 million impressions from the two-week campaign, plus additional consumer buzz over the remainder of the month.

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