admiral road designs:
new product launch public relations
Creating Media Buzz for Cuddly Canadian Baby Blankets
When web-based Admiral Road Designs decided to launch a U.S. web site to sell its polar fleece baby blankets, the company had to be careful with its marketing dollars. Bridge Global Strategies was hired to reach out to American consumers using media relations, but there was no advertising budget. Bridge distributed a news release in time for holiday gift buying, tying the company’s products to babies’ tendency to become attached to their blankets. Anyone could see why a baby would become attached to an Admiral Road blanket (which can be machine washed when dirty and is easily replaced if lost!). A psychologist was quoted in the news release about the reasons behind babies’ attachment to comfort items such as blankets. Bridge followed up by phone and some of the journalists were sent sample personalized blankets. Media coverage included several high-traffic web sites, an NBC top local market morning show and various print publications, but when InStyle and Redbook recommended the blankets as holiday gifts, the orders started pouring into the Canadian company.
After the first big burst of media coverage, most companies find that it isn't easy coming up with a steady stream of really newsworthy information to keep the media interested. Bridge came up with a great "second act" for Admiral Road that involved cause marketing. When the company developed designs for several new baby blankets that all included African animals, we suggested branding the new products as a new line, which we named "Baby Safari." We proposed a cause marketing partnership between Admiral Road and the African Wildlife Foundation and put the partnership together. For every Baby Safari blanket sold, the company donated a percentage of the profit to AWF. This was a win-win partnership that brought in some fundraising dollars for AWF and was a piece of news that editors found worthwhile writing about and consumers felt good about. The partnership was also featured on the AWF website, which receives a hefty amount of web traffic!