L.L. Bean Outsider Sale at UNH Sponsored by UNH MAC!

L.L. Bean is taking the 'Be an Outsider' campaign to college campuses across the country and bringing their most popular products straight to campus for students to purchase. This week, the college tour is rolling into Wildcat Country! On October 10th and 11th, L.L. Bean’s selling trailer, “The Outsider,” will be parked in the Fishbowl (aka Scott Hall Lawn) and will be stocked with products like Bean Boots, sweaters fleeces, slippers, and hats. This event will also feature a custom lace station where students can customize their Bean Boots with colorful laces. In addition to the selling trailer, L.L. Bean is also offering a Map and Compass Skills class for students – participants will also have the chance to win a free trip to Maine. L.L. Bean’s famous Bootmobile will also be on campus and offer on-site activities and giveaways, including the chance to win a $300 gift card.

I spoke with Pamela Merriman, President of the UNH Marketing and Advertising Club, about the event and why her organization is sponsoring it. Here are her responses:

Why is the Marketing and Advertising Club sponsoring LL Bean’s campus pop-up shop?

This fall, The UNH Marketing & Advertising Club (MAC) took on the challenge to help L.L. Bean create a mobile, pop-up store on campus, something that they are testing as part of their overall event marketing efforts. We worked closely with L.L. Bean and their marketing folks to help set up the event for success on campus through logistical coordination and developed and implemented a marketing campaign to create awareness and generate engagement among the UNH community.

What has the club been doing to promote the brand and event on campus? What have your members learned from this real-world marketing experience?

Gaining real world experience is an important part of the UNH MAC program. We have three year-long ways to help students dive more deeply into marketing allowing students the opportunity to learn from and work directly with industry professionals. Specifically, we offer a Fall Speaker Series where every other week we bring in leaders from the marketing and advertising field to share firsthand their expertise with our club members and the UNH community. This fall, we have speakers from Northwestern Mutual, L.L. Bean, Bridge Marketing, Momenta, Raka Creative and IBM Watson. Additionally, we host an annual symposium in the Spring (UNH MAC Summit for Marketing & Advertising Careers – MAC SMAC) where we bring industry leaders together to talk about trends, their companies and their careers. Last year we had an impressive lineup of marketing professionals from companies such as: Google, Timberland, Nike/Converse, Nielsen, Hill Holiday, General Mills, Stonyfield, Maia Strategy and John Hancock. We also work directly with businesses to help solve their marketing problems. This culminates into our annual Business Challenge in the Spring, whereby student teams work directly with area businesses to solve some of their pressing marketing issues by developing innovative marketing programs.

The L.L. Bean event helped our members hone several marketing skills: event logistical coordination (everything from securing the location, getting security to parking), conceiving and developing a marketing plan and implementing the plan. We did everything from planning the event to photography to designing creative advertisements to place in the media. For this event our marketing plan consisted of developing a virtual scavenger hunt on social media using the hashtags #UNHBeanOutsider and #UNHMAC.  Students identified photos of places outdoors on the UNH campus and retweeted/reposted to win L.L. Bean gift cards. We also developed a SnapChat filter for the event where students can access at the pop-up store location, thereby driving them to the actual location. Additionally, we are taking over the UNH Instagram account and broadcasting live from the event.  By working directly with L.L. Bean, it is helping to strengthen what we learn in the classroom by allowing us to plan and execute for a real company, solve real marketing challenges, and work directly with industry experts. It provides great experience, is a good resume builder and offers terrific networking opportunities with the company and its marketing agencies.

What made you decide to sponsor this event with this specific brand?

UNH and the UNH Peter T. Paul College of Business and Economics has a long, successful affiliation with L.L. Bean. The grandson of the founder for the company, Shawn Gorman, is a UNH graduate and is still affiliated with the brand. L.L. Bean has worked with our Paul College students in the past through the Marketing Department and the Marketing Workshop class to provide real world experience that is essential to putting academic theories to practice.

What has the process been like for you and your organization?

This process has been extremely beneficial and allowed us to collaborate with a large retail company along with their marketers. As we normally keep our real-world projects in the spring, it was good to take on a fall project and gain even more experience.

This event is a great opportunity to do some fall/winter shopping and get student discounts! As if that wasn't’t enough of a draw, you’re also supporting your fellow students by attending. UNH MAC worked incredibly hard to make this event a success, so go support your fellow Wildcats!

You don’t want to miss this awesome event so go check it out in the Fishbowl on Tuesday (10/10) and Wednesday (10/11) from 9am-5pm!