ALEXANDRIA, VA: SAF’s multi-faceted 2014 national public relations campaign will inspire consumers to make a beeline to flower shops to make flowers and plants — and the expertise of local florists — part of their everyday lives. Drawing on third-party experts and university research, key components of the campaign include:
PR Push: “Live Like a Flower.” Launching in April, this new campaign targets traditional women’s magazines, lifestyle reporters and influential bloggers with advice on how to live a happier, more fulfilling life. “Living life to the fullest is one of today’s top consumer trends,” said Jennifer Sparks, SAF’s vice president of marketing. “Scan some of the latest non-fiction book titles and open any magazine, and you’ll see the proliferation of self-help books and articles.”
For the launch, SAF will host a press event in New York to give national magazine editors one-to-one insight from the third-party experts about the emotional health benefits of flowers and the expertise of professional florists. Throughout the year, SAF will distribute Live Like a Flower tips to national publications and coordinate materials and interview opportunities for reporters. The advice also will reach consumers directly via SAF’s consumer sites and social media activities.
The VaseOff! All-Stars Challenge. With five successful VaseOff! Challenges under its belt — which drove traffic to AboutFlowersBlog.com and Facebook.com/AboutFlowers — SAF will host a grand finale to the series of online floral design contests. Winners from the past competitions will compete to become the VaseOff! All-Stars Champion, by creating a design that relates to the Live Like a Flower program. SAF will post the contestants’ entries on www.AboutFlowersBlog.com where visitors vote by clicking the Facebook “like” button — making the message about florists’ talents go viral.
Robust Social Media. SAF engages consumers daily with floral messages online. “When we get more people coming to our social media sites, the whole industry benefits,” Sparks said. Flower Factor: A Lifestyle Blog at AboutFlowersBlog.com features two-dozen contributors offering inspiring posts about making flowers and plants and florists more part of the everyday life. The blog links to SAF’s www.NationalFloristDirectory.com , www.AboutFlowers.com , www.Facebook.com/AboutFlowers , www.Twitter.com/FlowerFactor , www.Flickr.com/FlowerFactor , www.Pinterest.com/AboutFlowers and www.YouTube.com/SAFAboutFlowers .
International Women’s Day. SAF will use social media to promote flowers as part of International Women’s Day celebrations, and provide members with ideas and tools to build local visibility. International Women’s Day, held annually on March 8, “is gaining momentum here in the states,” Sparks said. “Around the world, people give flowers and other small gifts to their mothers, wives, grandmothers and daughters, as well as coworkers, teachers and friends in observance of the occasion.” SAF offers Facebook graphics, suggested posts and Tweets, and promotional advice to help members raise awareness for Women’s Day among their customer base at www.safnow.org/womensday.
SAF’s 2014 marketing programs are possible thanks to SAF retail dues and voluntary contributions to the SAF Fund for Nationwide Public Relations by wholesalers, suppliers, importers and growers. Since the PR Fund’s inception in 2001, PR Fund programs have generated more than 1.1 billion consumer impressions. Visit www.safnow.org/prfund