Hawk’s Hub is off to a bright start with their new rental program. They kicked off their first semester of offering rentals by giving students neon smiley-face stickers, with the text “I rented books today!” The simplicity of the design was deliberate, according to Bookstore Manager Nyla Ruccia.
“We wanted to spark a conversation,” she said. “We consciously didn’t put our store name on the stickers because we were hoping for the dialogue to happen naturally. We wanted to give the students something to make them smile and that other people would notice and ask about: ‘Hey, where did you rent your books?’ It was a fun and easy way to get the word out that this is something we’re offering now.”
The idea behind the rental stickers came to Ruccia when she was thinking about how to reach out to the student population. One of the challenges was that the program was starting in the summer, when the campus is much less crowded.
“It’s hard to market to students in the summer,” she said. “They don’t always read the posters, and with the majority of our students commuting, everyone comes and goes.”
Inspired by the American Red Cross’s blood donor stickers, Ruccia decided to test out a similar reward. And the response was positive: “Everyone smiled and put them on, promising to wear them proudly. Most of the students were on their way to class so hopefully the stickers were a conversation-starter throughout the day.”
The smiley face stickers are bright yellow, green and pink. Both of Black Hawk College’s bookstores, Hawk’s Hub and the East Campus Bookstore, are now offering rentals and plan to continue handing out stickers to students in the fall.