UPS and Corona Take First Shots at ‘March Madness’

uspstoreThe UPS Store and Corona are among the earliest brands tipping off “March Madness” campaigns. While the beer company launched a cause marketing initiative today, the shipping services retail firm debuted a Facebook-driven effort on Feb. 21.

UPS Store, a division of UPS, has been running “Print Madness” ads on Facebook.com. They require viewers to “like” the brand’s page before they can enter a contest for a trip to the NCAA Final Four Men’s Basketball Championship.

Once they click the “like” button and answer a basketball trivia question, viewers see this landing page copy: “Pass us your e-mail address and we’ll enter you for a chance to win airfare and hotel accommodations for two, two tickets to each NCAA Final Four game plus $500 spending cash!” People who enter by filling out a contact form will get a 20 percent off coupon for printing services at one of the brand’s 4,300-odd stores.

In the last five days, UPS Store’s one-year-old Facebook page has gone from around 3,100 “likes” to just under 5,500.

Michelle Van Slyke, marketing VP for the San Diego-based UPS Store, called increasing the brand’s Facebook presence “a major goal.” She said, “What you are seeing right now in regards to Facebook is phase one. We have another exciting and interesting phase that will happen as the ‘Print Madness’ campaign continues.”

Van Slyke explained how the Facebook ads dovetail with the parent company’s larger “We Love Logistics” TV and online ads that first appeared in September 2010. UPS’s goal, she said, is to ultimately brand itself as a source for both B2B and B2C shipping/printing services.

Her point is underscored by the mix of consumer- and business-based websites on which UPS Store is running display ads for “Print Madness.” The sites include Entrepreneur.com, ESPN.com, WallStreetJournal.com, FoxSports.com, WashingtonPost.com, Yahoo.com, and Hulu.com. Detroit-based Doner is the agency of record for UPS Store and developed the digital campaign.

On the geo-social front, a two-month Whrrl campaign began on Jan. 20 while giving users a chance to win a $10 UPS Store gift card. In the Whrrl “Society” tips section, Van Slyke said her team will add information about the “Print Madness” Facebook contest as well as other offers the campaign will soon premiere.

“And we will engage with bloggers who use Whrrl to tell stories about our brand,” she said. “We will be seeing that over the next six weeks.”

Corona Using Text Campaign to Raise Funds for V Foundation

Beginning today through April 5, Corona is running a “Find a Cure” campaign that encourages consumers to text the phrase “DontGiveUp” to 85944 to donate $5 to The V Foundation. The cancer research organization is in memory of late NCAA basketball coach Jim Valvano, who passed away in 1993.

In addition to donating through text, visitors to the Facebook pages for Corona Extra and Corona Light can contribute to the foundation. They will also be encouraged to share the “Find a Cure” promotion with their friends.

According to a prepared release from the beer brands’ Chicago-based parent company, Crown Imports, a similar promotion on Corona Light’s Facebook page for the V Foundation in December raised $20,000.

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