Foreword Online

Ideas, information and industry news for collegiate retailers



March 2014: Spruce Up Your Spring

Posted by Stephanie Kubas on 3/1/14 4:30 AM
Topics: social media

For many students, the time between spring break and finals seems to drag on — but not at your store! A campus-wide scavenger hunt is just the thing to get students excited about a new season.

Unlike a traditional scavenger hunt, this will have a social media component. Your store will post clues that lead students to well-known campus locations. As students solve each clue, they’ll take a photo with the corresponding item or location and post it to your Facebook Page. At the end of the day of your scavenger hunt, your store will simply tally up the amount of clues each team got correct and the one with the most wins.

We’ve outlined how to host a successful social scavenger hunt below and included all the resources you need to start planning your very own event. Take a look:Spruce Up Your Spring

Prepare for your event

We recommend using your store’s official Facebook page to post clues and allow students to submit their photo entries to increase interest and interaction.

We’ve chosen Facebook as the ideal social platform for your scavenger hunt because teams can easily add photos as an album rather than individual posts, which can be a challenge to keep track of. They’ll simply upload an album to their personal page and tag your store to ensure you can see it. Students should also include a team hashtag as the caption of each photo for easy tracking. Students will compete on teams of 2-4 members to encourage participation.

Select a date

Choose a time to host your hunt. Take into consideration other major campus events that might overlap with your event. You’ll want to select an open date so the maximum amount of students will be able to participate. We suggest devoting an entire day to the scavenger hunt, beginning when your store opens and wrapping up an hour or so before you close, but you can choose whatever schedule works best for you.

You’ll also need to plan where you want to kick off the event. We suggest asking the teams to join you at your store at a designated time to receive their clues. This is a good way to drive traffic and interact with the students before they begin.

Identify locations

After you’ve chosen your date, you’ll need to identify locations for your clues. We recommend one clue for each hour the event is taking place. This gives students an adequate amount of time to solve them and take photos at each location. Your locations can be as specific as you prefer. For instance, you could lead students to the library or a specific painting in the library.

Craft your clues

Present your clues as riddles that direct your teams to a specific location. This is a great way to promote the rich history of your institution and share some fun facts about your campus. For instance, consider referencing famous alumni, historic landmarks or well-known buildings. Our clue flyer has several examples listed for inspiration.

Promote your hunt

Promote your event using our customizable materials including a poster, flyer, Facebook cover photo and web image.

Download: “Spruce Up Your Spring” scavenger hunt marketing kit
Download the marketing kit
Download Marketing Kit

Get students signed up

Since students participate through Facebook, it’s a good idea to have them register there as well. For instance, you could prompt students with a message like, “Put your super sleuth skills to the test in our campus-wide social scavenger hunt. Simply post your team hashtag and tag all your members in the post on our Facebook page to sign up.”  This should take place before the hunt begins and it’s a great way to grow your fan base, too!

Let the games begin

Once students are gathered at your kick off location, distribute your list of clues and post it to your Facebook page for any team member who wasn’t able to make it. Then, send students on their way to start solving clues! Throughout the hunt, teams will post their photo-captured clues into an album with their team name. They will tag your Facebook page so you can easily keep track of each team’s submitted photos.

Monitor your Facebook page

Your Facebook page will be the central location for any updates or changes regarding the hunt; use this platform to keep the excitement level high by posting which team is in the lead with the most clues solved and what prizes they could win. Ensure someone at your store is available to frequently monitor the page to address any questions that may arise, as well.

Announce the winners

Students should return to your store at the end of the event to find out who the won with the most correct photos. You’ll need to take a final tally of the submitted clues to identify a winning team. In the event of a tie, check the time stamps of uploaded clues. The team that uploaded their clues the earliest is the winner. Award them with your designated prize, then post their photos for all to see on Facebook!

Wrap up the festivities

Bring the scavenger hunt to a close by compiling the submitted photos into a slideshow and playing them at your store. This is an easy way to show off how much fun students had and encourage others to take part in your future events.

About Stephanie Kubas

Stephanie was our former MBS Marketing Communications Manager. She helped Foreword Online evolve from simple reposts from other industry-related sites, to original content sourced directly from our college stores. Although she no longer writes for Foreword Online, it still holds a special place in her heart.

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