Brand Moves We Love - September Edition

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  • by SEEK Staff

Qualitative market research may be our bread and butter - but brands are our cup of tea. Working in the market research space has a way of intertwining us with the ad industry as well. The work we do and the humans we serve are all tied to brands. We work to empathically connect our clients with their consumers and forge meaningful human bonds, which is often brought to life through advertising or product innovation. 

Nowadays, we know it takes a lot for brands to truly connect with their consumers and form a strong relationship. The market space requires brands be “authentic” and great storytellers. They’re tasked with making an impact on the world or taking a political stance. In order to do so, companies have to take big risks (and often shell out a decent chunk of change), which can be pretty intimidating. It’s so much easier for brands to stick to the status quo - but the ones making headlines are the companies that were brave enough to push boundaries. And when a brand makes bold moves, we sit up and take notice.

Since the start of this year, we’ve shared some of our team’s favorite brand moves with you. The moves that are disrupting the marketplace and doing something unique. This September, we’re back with new and exciting brand moves we love that we believe you might love, too. 

BRAND: Dick's sporting goods

Move they made:

  • Imagine practicing all Summer for soccer team tryouts, just to learn that your school’s sports program has been cut. Unfortunately for many US students, this is becoming a frequent reality. 64% of school sports budgets are either stagnant or decreasing and 24% of schools don’t even offer sports. Dick’s Sporting Goods is pushing back, introducing their “Sports Matter” campaign. The 60-second spot is a tearjerker, showcasing the emotions tied to playing a sport and being a part of a team - something that is being ripped away from many children. The campaign not only sheds light on the issue but also prompts viewers to donate to their foundation to help schools and organization’s sports programs.

Why we love it:

  •  “I love that Dick's is paying attention to an alarming trend of rising costs and lack of funding in youth sports. And they're not only showcasing this problem - they're also taking action by donating funds and encouraging their shoppers to donate as well. As a former youth/teen athlete, I can attribute so many life skills, both personal and professional, to playing sports and am sad to see that kids don't have the opportunity to play due to rising costs or lack of funding. I'm also aware that Dick's is looking out for their brand, products, and partners because with a decrease in youth sports comes a decrease in sales, but I don't think this brand move is all self-serving and I appreciate the awareness they're bringing to the issue.”  - Jordann Ndoye, Senior Account Strategist

Brand: Busch Light

Move they made: 

  • Nature called, and Busch answered. This past July they gained attention for their Pop Up Schop activation. Fans were asked to follow along with their social media scavenger hunt to uncover the location of the hidden pop-up brewery, which only opened its doors for a few hours. Those who find and attend will be treated to merchandise giveaways, including passes to US national parks and a cabin getaway for four. One lucky attendee could even win a lifetime supply of Busch beer! Not only was this activation a fun take on the ever growingly popular pop-up approach, but it also aligned seamlessly with Busch’s commitment to “creating a better world.” They’ve continued to work with the National Forest Foundation and pledged to plant 100 trees for each visitor in attendance.

Why we love it:

  • “I love this move because pop-up shops are a current trend (here on the east coast, it's pop-up beer gardens that are all the rage). Busch beer used this "pop-up shop" trend and sent it into overdrive with this social media campaign that combined a pop-up shop, scavenger hunt, philanthropy and a ton of fun. This campaign is part of an elongated goal of getting more active followers on social media, and it sure has worked with me. Now I follow them and enjoy their fun, creative use of the platform. They have changed the way I look at their brand. I used to see them as just a cheap, college beer and now I see them as an innovative brand that has fun while not taking themselves too seriously. It's been about 20 years since I've drank Busch Beer, but now I'm highly reconsidering buying some again.” - Zak Renzetti-Voit, Director of Client Engagement

Brand: AirBnb

Move they made:

  • In wake of evacuations caused by Hurricane Dorian, Airbnb has begun offering free housing to evacuees and relief workers. The “Open Homes Program” includes over 800 hosts who have opened their doors to people in Florida, Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina and Alabama. This program first began following Hurricane Sandy but has since grown exponentially. In the events following a crisis, it’s heartwarming to see brands like this step up and take action. Airbnb’s efforts are not simply a powerful move on their part, but also act as a compelling reminder of the kindness and generosity that can be shown by strangers to strangers. 

Why we love it:

    • "I love that Airbnb encouraged their hosts to open their doors for hurricane victims. It promotes doing good and highlights the positivity within humanity while also driving loyalty from people like me who interact with the brand only occasionally. I definitely see Airbnb in a different light now." - Jordann Ndoye, Senior Account Strategist

    Brand: Cheez-Its + Red Wine

    Move they made:

    • Who doesn’t love a wine and cheese night? Well, now you can mix it up with a Wine and Cheez-Its night. The cracker brand recently teamed up with House Wine to offer their fans the perfect pairing of red wine and original Cheez-Its. 

    Why we love it:

    • “I love this product innovation! Cheez-Its just gets me.” - Courtney PeGan-Stevens, Senior Vice President - Operations

    We know there are more brand moves to love and we'd like to hear from you. What have you noticed? What are you loving? Join our discussion on LinkedIn.