Kaplow Covered in Trades: Spin Master

Nicole Zerillo September 03 2008

Spin Master, a children’s entertainment company, never worked with an outside PR firm before tapping Kaplow to assist in the promotion of its new toy, Bugville Live Butterfly Treehouse. The product became available in stores in January, but Spin Master had not done much PR beyond sampling and outreach to trade magazines.

Kaplow created a launch event promoting the product, which provides children with the opportunity to raise Painted Lady butterflies in a small habitat, and framed it to run live on the CBS Early Show, featuring a life-sized butterfly habitat.

Strategy
Kaplow sought to design an event that would garner national media coverage and provide children ages 4 to 12 a positive interaction with insects and the natural world, says Shannon Eis, VP at Kaplow.

This event was a way for Spin Master to capture more mass media coverage, adds Donna MacNeil, senior director of communications for Spin Master.

“We wanted to create a brand story and share with our partners and retailers,” MacNeil says.

Tactics
Kaplow sought to generate buzz about the habitat by creating a national media spot on a morning show to hit a large segment of mothers, a target demographic for the product, Eis says.

The agency also reached out to media, such as local listings pages; parenting venues, like free print publications; local broadcast and radio; and public school teachers in New York City, through contacts.

Results
Kaplow secured the segment on CBS’ Early Show. Also, several classes from the New York City public school system attended, and resulted in the placement of 300 products in classrooms around the city.

“[What] we were most impressed with were feedback stories, letters from school children,” MacNeil says.

Future
MacNeil says Spin Master might revisit promotion of the Butterfly Treehouse next spring, and is looking for projects to share with Kaplow.

PR team: Spin Master (Toronto) and Kaplow (New York)

Campaign: Bugville Live Butterfly Treehouse event

Duration: April-May 2008

Budget: $20,000

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