Sam’s Club Grand Opening Celebrity Events
General Mills was seeking a way to develop an experience that rewarded their partner (Sam’s Club) and created a lasting memory for the customers. The idea was to utilize a celebrity autograph appearance for Sam’s Club grand openings/remodels.
On behalf of General Mills, we created a seamless operation where the client didn’t need to worry about anything – from securing the talent, handling the celebrity engagement with the Sam’s Club manager, promoting the appearance in the media and ensuring everything onsite is smooth for the member and the Club team.
It was important to ensure every audience was made to feel important and that the requirement of their time would be minimal:
- Member – Create a positive experience for the member by providing an opportunity to meet a celebrity for a photo and an autograph. We provide photos (with the General Mills logo) to extend the branding beyond the event.
- Club Employees – By being onsite, we were able to “handle” the celebrity and facilitate the run of show, which puts the Club manager at ease and reduce their resources (i.e., money and people). In addition, we carved out time in the program for Club employees to meet separately the celebrity for autographs and photos.
- Celebrity – Provide a positive experience for the talent and their manager by ensuring that they are well-prepared prior to the event – this included providing a run of show, talking points and clear expectations. We served as their host onsite to swiftly move them from point to point.
To achieve these results, CO&P implemented the following services:
- Strategic Counsel & Material Development
- Generate compelling news story, plan the event run of show and participate in internal update meetings
- Create targeted media list to include local print (daily newspapers, weekly community, magazines), television news, radio and bloggers
- Develop media materials to include event press release and media advisory
- Create radio station tie-ins with prize pack giveaways
- Securing athlete appearance
- Work with player representatives to develop a list of athletes
- Secure and train the athlete on messaging for the event
- Set clear expectations on what is needed (i.e., athlete attire, photo rights)
- PR Event Coordination & Media Relations
- Work with Sam’s Club management to handle logistics, timing and run of show to ensure a smooth on-site event
- Proactive personal media outreach calls will be made and targeted pitch emails will be distributed to all relevant local media
- Attendance at the event to coordinate event run of show and facilitate on-site media
- On-site Event Management
- Manage the on-site event, crowd control, talent security and handling of any on-site needs
- Oversight responsibilities for on-site needs such as autograph cards, pens, wristbands for crowd control, etc.
- Overall celebrity management on-site
- Design autograph card
- Ensure that we have rights to high-resolution photographs prior to final contracting with the athlete
- Design the autograph card
- Coordinate with Sam’s Club for the in-store poster
With more than 30 events under our belts, we turned this into a seamless event for all parties.