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Leveraging Campus Celebrities to Market to Students

Posted by Joe Clarkin on 8/1/14 4:30 AM

Roll Out the Red Carpet For Campus Celebrities

Whether it’s through their unique style or memorable personality, you can go to just about any school in the country and find certain staff members that have gained a legendary reputation around campus. In order to give these people the kind of exposure they deserve, we are suggesting that you show off these campus celebrities while also promoting your own store.

Encourage your students to get to know your faculty and staff by interacting with them both in person and on social media. Not only will they be able to strengthen their relationships with the people in charge of their education, but you’ll be able to get them to interact with your store through your fun competitions. You can get staff to participate as well if it helps you get these ideas off the ground, but do your best to focus on the students, as they are the driving force behind your store.

In order to help you spread the word about your events, we’ve created a number of customizable marketing materials that you can put up around campus and across social media sites. The more people that see your advertisements, the more likely it is that you will have good participation for your events.

Let’s roll out the red carpet with a few fun ideas for your students to participate in. You can download the full marketing kit here.

Download: “Campus Celebrities” marketing kit

Download the kit

Download Marketing Kit

Campus look-alike contest

Get your students active on social media by hosting a look-a-like contest. Encourage students to either take a picture of or with a campus staff member along with a mention of which celebrity the student believes they look like. Once you’ve found one you like, post it on social media next to a picture of the celebrity the staff member is being compared to. Include a comment like, “Do you agree that <staff member> looks like <celebrity>? Tell us why or why not!” This will hopefully get students excited about finding new celebrity look-a-likes and you can even select these people for other parts of your campaign (more below)!

Celebrity nominations

Encourage your students to find staff members from around campus that they believe deserve to have everyone know more about them. Students can submit photos of their celebrity nominations onto your Facebook, Twitter or Instagram with the hashtag #<school name/initials>Celebrity. You can then pick and choose any nominations you like to be featured as your campus “Celebrity of the Week.” Although we are encouraging you to only pick one person a week so as to draw out students’ interest in the campaign, you should be promoting your event every day using the same #<school name/initials>Celebrity. You can also reward students who submit a staff member that gets selected by giving away a “Celebri-T-Shirt” from your clothing section to give them a little extra incentive.

Celebrity Q&A

After you’ve selected your “Celebrity of the Week,” have them do a short question and answer session that you can host on your social media sites. If you’d like to gain some additional traffic to your events, you can have your social media followers send in questions that they’d like to have answered by your chosen celebrity. This is a great way to build momentum for your event. But if you would rather host the question and answer session yourself we’ve come up with a few questions:

  • What do you like most about your job?
  • What is your favorite place on campus?
  • Who is your favorite celebrity?
  • What are some of your hobbies away from work?
  • How does it feel to be considered a campus celebrity?

Do your best to keep these question and answer sessions relatively short, and avoid asking questions that require rather personal answers. Readers will enjoy getting to learn some new things about their new celebrities.

Celebrity store favorites

Since you’ve already brought your “Celebrity of the Week” in to do his or her question and answer session, you might as well take advantage of their presence. Have them select a few of their favorite things from your bookstore that you can display (preferably on a red carpet) at the front of the store. Make sure to include some promotional signs with your celebrity display so as to keep people talking about your events. Keep the celebrity’s display up for the duration to their stay as “Celebrity of the Week.”

Hall of fame

Even though each celebrity’s week as the face of your store will eventually come to an end, that doesn’t mean that they should be forgotten entirely. Try your best to find some space where you can display a picture of each “Celebrity of the Week” along with some fun information about why they got chosen in the first place. You could display what their bookstore choices were during their week-long reign, or simply repost their question and answer session alongside their photo for people to read while they shop.

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