This past Halloween, Dunkin Donuts ignited brand love with the promise of free coffee. I was one of over 700 Instagramers who accepted the challenge using #DDcostumecontest.
Since the stakes were high – free coffee for a year and a cash prize – I knew I needed an original costume. I brainstormed ideas and frequently checked the hashtag to see what others were doing. Most people were dressing up as a Dunkin Donuts product or as basketball players dunking donuts.
Luckily, I was home for a school break during my brainstorming session. I just started bouncing ideas off my very creative mother when finally, I remembered one of my favorite things about Halloween as a child: dancing to the song, “Witch’s Brew.”
“Mom, Mom, Mom!” I yelled excitedly. “I’m going to be ‘witches brew,’ and I will ‘brew’ Dunkin Donuts coffee.” I checked the hashtag one more time to make sure no one else had done the same already. Seeing I was in the clear, I ran downstairs to rummage through my mother’s Halloween decorations.
I probably told at least 20 people about how excited I was to enter the costume contest and about how much I loved Dunkin Donuts coffee. This was a huge boost for their brand because being from the Midwest, most of my friends and family were not too familiar with Dunkin Donuts coffee. I, myself, was only regularly exposed to Dunkin Donuts this past summer when I lived in Pennsylvania.
While I did not win the grand prize, I received a participation prize: a cup, a gift card and two branded Christmas tree ornaments. I was so excited that I posted a photo of my prize on my Instagram story. Because I have a public account and posted about the contest twice, I potentially opened the door to almost 1,000 impressions for Dunkin Donuts.
If 700 people posted, Dunkin Donuts is looking at around 7 million impressions just for a few thousand dollars in prizes.
Through kindling brand love via an Instagram contest, Dunkin Donuts was able to reach a wider audience for less money than any advertising campaign. Well done, Dunkin Donuts, on an excellent, impressive campaign. I can’t wait to see what next Halloween brings for your brand.