352 Inc. / Digital Marketing / April 13th, 2008

352 Ann Arbor Marketing Idea

I am struggling up here now trying to sell our services to a Michigan based companies for a few reasons. (1) The slump and the impact the car industry is having on other businesses. (2) Companies want to buy from Michigan companies, and yes we are now a Michigan based company, so let me make myself clearer, companies in MI want to buy from MI companies and have the money stay in Michigan, which leaves me in a bit of a pickle. In order to justify a development team in Michigan (or at least pitch it, to the powers that be), I need to have a lot of big clients up here to sustain the staff.

So I got thinking about a marketing campaign, how can I get the 352’s name out to the ordinary people, how do I get our company known like it is in Florida, a prestigious, elite company known for developing custom web based solutions for clients that function and look superb.

So here is my plan, it is “Reality Web Design” you the audience and users make all the decisions and pick the best and most deserving winners.

I will need someone to manage my campaign so first I will hold an open audition for “The Intern”  this will be a 12-week process, where I will hold weekly challenges to get the best all around team player.

“The Intern” will then hold two competitions in conjunction, first is called “Extreme Makeover Web Edition” we will target Michigan website owners with poorly performing, dilapidated websites. Second is “Web Idol” where will hold a competition to find our very own “Kelly Clarkson” of Web Design. The public will call in and vote on the winners for each competition.

We will take 5 winners from the “Extreme Makeover Web Edition” stage, which will move on to the “Are you smarter than a Web Designer” stage — this will involve web site owners answering questions based on web design topics, trying to out-smart our professionals. Now here is the twist the person who gets the most questions wrong will win the competition and have their website redesign by the winner of “Web Idol” because the truly know nothing about web design, the other 4 runner ups will be tagged “lazy” because they had the some knowledge to help themselves but they didn’t, and will enter into a spin off show called “The Lazy Loser” a boot camp to turn laziness into motivation.

My Judges will be
Don (VP of Sales) as “Donald Trump”
Len (Acc manager Tampa) as Don Jr
PVR (VP of Marketing) as “Ivanka”
Travis (Acc Manager) as “Ty Pennington”
Mark (Acc Manager) as “Jeff Foxworthy”
Evan (Business Analyst) as “Simon Cowell”
Launa (Acc Manager) as “Paula Abdul”
Jan (Acc Manager) as “Randy Jackson”
Pete (Business Analyst) as “Ryan Seacrest”

During the “Web Idol” and “Extreme Makeover Web Edition” stages voters will have called or texted in to vote for their favorite designer or website owner, proceeds from the votes coupled with the advertising money, made from sponsors will all be put into a fund called “352 Ann Arbor gives back” the takings will be used to help families in Michigan and Detroit.

All the exposure I will get from these competitions along with helping others will optimistically get me exposure here in Michigan and turn our company name from “35-who” to “352”.