We may only just be on the cusp of summer, but Freshers planning is well under way at BAM HQ with many brands already booking their campaigns at Freshers Fairs up and down the UK.
So in these pivotal planning stages we have compiled 7 of the most important tips brands should remember in order to have maximum impact and achieve maximum results. These tips may seem obvious to some, but brands should never underestimate the importance of these seemingly small details.
Tip 1 – Include student participation
Gamification is key. Adding a gaming element to your activation will not only ensure your brand stands out from the crowd but it will also increase attraction and engagement with your brand.
The possibilities are endless with concepts and creations for your activation. You can keep it nice and simple with a classic game of spin to win or you could pull out all the stops with something new and innovative that students have never seen before!
Whatever the budget, whatever the nature of your campaign, there is an engaging concept out there for everyone, the only limit is your imagination. We also advise brands to ensure they have a coveted prize on offer to be won, something students want to participate and compete for. These prizes do not need to break the bank, they just need to be fun and desirable to the student audience.
Tip 2 – Don’t forget the Freebie!
It it safe to say students love a freebie, well, don’t we all?! Whether it’s a sweet treat, a nonsensical toy or a practical household item, if it is free, students want it!
When considering what freebies to bring to the fairs, try to be creative and fun with your ideas, whilst ensuring it has use and longevity. By offering attractive, desirable freebies you will attract swarms of students to your stand, vying to get their hands on one.
Tip 3 – Keep your data collection simple
It may be tempting to ask hundreds of questions exploring student habits, lifestyles and preferences whilst you have their attention, but students can be easily deterred by lengthy forms. For students value exchange is important. What you are offering students has to be worth their time and has to be worth them providing their details in exchange.
With hundreds of activation’s for students to get round in just a few hours, your stand must be attractive, engaging and more importantly quick to ensure students connect with your brand. After all, an email address is really all you need to re market to students in the future. Ensuring your data collection is simple also means that your promotional teams can process as many students as possible during the fair, resulting is maximised data collection.
Tip 4 – Don’t fall victim to buffering
It is important to be aware that not all unions provide wifi at Freshers events, and if they do, be prepared for weak signal strength as every stallholder attempts to log on. With this in mind, we always advise brands to take their own dongle to increase their chance of staying online.
Sometime however, even having your own dongle doesn’t cut it. This doesn’t mean brands should revert back to pen and paper though, it just means brands need to make sure they have a plan B!
What’s plan B? Be functional offline!
BAM can provide brands with a bespoke, GDPR compliant, data capture app that is fully functional offline. Struggling with wifi is not an option when you are surrounded by students wanting to give your their data. An offline app ensures your data capture is always on.
The data is stored on the device and once connected to adequate wifi, the data can be synced and processed. Get in touch with our team to find out more.
Tip 5 – Expect the unexpected
One thing to remember during Freshers is that anything can happen. With over 200 days of fairs happening at 120 universities up and down the country, it can be a very busy and manic couple of months.
Our advice is to stay ahead of the game and be prepared. We highly recommend arriving at the fair as early as possible. This will allow you the space to set up and the time to resolve any issues you may experience with your activation before students arrive.
Once you are all set up and ready to go you can simply sit back, grab a coffee and watch all the latecomers rush to set their stands up with barely a minute to spare.
Tip 6 – Be engaging and leave your mark
It is often said that you never get a second chance to make a good impression, never has a statement been more true and relevant than at the Freshers Fairs. The students you meet at these events are experiencing a major milestone in their lives. For the first time they are living away from parents, they have a new found independence and they are now in charge of managing their own finances.
Who is responsible for making a good impression for your brand? Your promotional staff.
Behind every exceptional campaign is exceptional staff. At BAM we provide the very best promotional staff of all levels, from Brand Ambassadors to Event Managers. We have a comprehensive database of experienced, talented staff across the UK that will bring your campaign to life and leave the right impression of your brand in the student market. If you want to secure the best promotional staff for your campaign, get in touch with our staffing experts for more information.
Tip 7 – Keep the message alive
Don’t forget students are for life not just for Freshers, a motto we stand by here at BAM. Freshers may be one of the biggest events in the student calendar, but it is extremely important to continue engaging with students throughout the rest of the academic year and beyond. Many businesses become overly dependant on Freshers and forget that there are endless opportunities to reconnect with students to build and secure life long relationships. Contact us for more information on creating an “always on” campaign.