Unveiling Verizon’s largest retail location through strategic media relations.
Making Chicago’s Magnificent Mile more Magnificent.
In November 2014, Verizon Wireless announced it would open its latest store on Chicago’s “Magnificent Mile,” just in time for the holiday shopping season. As the largest store in the country, Verizon needed to not only engage with media and bloggers to highlight the store’s unique customer experience, but it needed to drive store traffic and sales in the process.
To generate excitement with media, desk drops were delivered the week prior to the event, with an offer to preview the new store before it opened. During the preview tours, attendees were paired with executive level spokespeople to help answer their questions and help tell Verizon’s Destination Store story.
The grand opening celebration took place on Saturday, Nov. 15, and featured a guest appearance by Chicago native, Jennifer Hudson as well as remarks from Verizon leadership. In addition, Verizon made a donation of $250,000 to WINGS (Women in Need Growing Stronger), a local non-profit serving domestic violence victims. This donation was used to help create a social movement, getting people talking about domestic violence prevention using the hashtag #VoicesHavePower.
It was also important that we engage Verizon employees, especially in the Midwest, to serve as brand ambassadors for this new shopping destination. Employees received information about its progress through an internal website, and also direct communications from leaders. This included a post-opening video tour of the store from the general manager in the style of MTV Cribs.
Overall the PR efforts to support the grand opening of the new Verizon Destination Store in Chicago were a success. Media coverage resulted in capacity-level attendance at the grand opening celebration.
— 347 media mentions
— 212,620,667 impressions
— $361,230 publicity value (does NOT include wire stories)
reached more than 500,000 in a two-week span. Chicagoans made their voices heard more than 550 times, resulting in an additional $5,000 donation to WINGS.