BlackBerry Mobile Strikes Out With New Branded Merch, Social Media Campaign
In a move to bolster its phone sales, BlackBerry Mobile, manufacturer of the BlackBerry Motion smartphone, has launched a multifaceted marketing campaign combining social media and promotional merchandise.
The program is called BlackBerry Smartphone Fan League, which is its first problem. It works by having users connect their various social media accounts (Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Youtube, etc.) in order to post branded content for the beleaguered company. This allows members of the Fan League to collect points, which in turn lets them enter a monthly drawing for a chance to win a free smartphone as well as win branded merch, including hats, a messenger bag and a travel mug.
While the merch looks alright, it’s going to have to perform magic or do folks’ taxes for them if BlackBerry Mobile hopes to make up for the fact that its phone is not selling particularly well.
While marketing campaigns that offer promo products as prizes can work very well for brands, especially on social media, it’s important to note that successful campaigns must be both creative and bold enough to grab the attention of end-users. While BlackBerry-branded merch may be enticing to some, the brand hasn’t exactly tried to make the BlackBerry Smartphone Fan League very fun or exciting. If you need proof, just give these two directives from BlackBerry’s website a read:
“Promote BlackBerry Mobile in your status updates and/or tweets. Come back every day to show your support. Include all of these phrases: #BBMobile #BBFanLeaguePromo”
“Share more content. Here’s what you’ll be sharing: ‘BlackBerry KEYone Black Edition now available in the US from Amazon and Best Buy! - Both Amazon and Best Buy now have the BlackBerry KEYone Black Edition listed as in stock and available for $549 US.’”
Not the most compelling stuff.
Here at Promo Marketing, we love to celebrate great marketing stunts. Hidden Valley’s $35,000 ranch dressing bottle? Great promotion. McDonalds’ $10,000 Big Mac ring? Marketing gold. Jolly Rancher shaped jewelry for Valentine’s Day? Dynamite.
But BlackBerry-branded merch in exchange for boring hashtags? If you ask us, that’s probably not going to make up for the sales deficit when compared to Apple and Samsung. Though the chance to win a phone is pretty cool, is it really worth the effort of peppering one’s social media with so much junk it’ll look like you’ve been hacked? Also, while the merch looks pretty decent, it’s clear that the design team decided on anything but bold. With so much black, and so little personality, it’s safe to say that people won’t be lining up to get their hands on this stuff.