If you live in and around West Michigan, you may have noticed some bright blue locker/shipping containers pop up in Eastown or downtown Holland. Our client, Cubi Market offers a revolutionary way to buy locally grown and curated goods. West Michigan has a rich local offering of farm-fresh produce to artisan goods and personal care items that otherwise would be “out of the way” for consumers to acquire. Cubi sources all of the goods through their online platform and offers a physical location to pick it all up on your schedule.
We were given the opportunity to introduce Cubi Market to the West Michigan community while also putting the emphasis on shopping and supporting local.
Bringing a new service offering to a community like West Michigan can be a challenge, so we did everything we could to spread the word about Cubi Market and exactly how it worked to garner the attention of early adopters and residents of the neighborhoods they reside in!
From the get-go, we knew our focus was hyper-local to West Michigan. Cubi Market’s key differentiator is their locally sourced fulfillment process and easy local pickup, this meant honing in on the right local reporters, news leaders, and media personalities to spread the word and garner more visibility for our client. Cubi Market’s team’s extensive experience, the amazing local farmers/artisans and their unique product offerings coupled with a charismatic spokesperson like Paul Mixa, provided us with the right storylines to pitch to West Michigan media.
Our goal was to increase brand awareness and grow Cubi’s customer base by connecting them to local merchants. We would do this through 6-8 pieces of earned media over engagement, in this case, three months.
As professionals, we know this is a lofty goal as media relations is a long game. PR is focused on building relationships, trust and educating reporters on clients and their service offering and that takes time.
So what were our recommendations?
Jules (8THIRTYFOUR’s PR Manager and known lover of Harry Styles) started working at 8THIRTYFOUR this year and jumped into strategy development and storyline mapping.
As PR pros, we are idea people and the wheels were TURNING! Naturally, our strategy was exhaustive and included highlighting farmers, hosting community gatherings, whipping up locally grown recipes and so much more.
To make sure we pulled it off, our project included these areas:
- Competitor Analysis
- Public Relations Survey
- Public Relations Strategy
- Strategy Execution
- Media Relations
- Media Briefings
- Light Stalking
- Writing Guest Blogs
Now to the meat and potatoes…we had to get a food reference in. We were able to successfully accomplish our goal of securing 8 pieces of media over the course of our 3-month engagement. Prominent and trusted local publications like The Holland Sentinel, ReVue Magazine, MiBiz, Grand Rapids Business Journal, West Michigan Woman, WZZM 13 News, and WGVU-FM’s Morning Show with Shelley Irwin shared the story of Cubi.
The result of these online, broadcast, and print placements was over 567,000 impressions resulting in brand awareness and online visibility.
Working on introducing new brands and services is always fun and exciting. But, at the end of the day, it comes down to hustle, connections and sheer determination.
Does your brand or service need some serious love on the media front? Are you fun? Then contact us ASAP. We can’t wait to work with you.