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Steve invented a lighting system for school buses after a tragedy in 2010 when a local teenager was hit and killed by a motorist as she was crossing the street to board her school bus. He pitched a prototype of his lighting system at industry trade shows. School transportation officials snubbed his system and called it “just an idea” as they walked past his booth. Consequently, Steve became discouraged. Steve soon realized he needed help with his marketing efforts in order to get his lighting system on school buses.
In Order to Help Steve, I Had To Learn an Entire Industry
Knowing little about school buses, I gained a new mantra "Read if you want to lead". Reading was essential to learning the school bus industry, as well as determining the most effective marketing tactics to implement.
Assembling the Team
As part of the marketing plan, Steve cemented a deal with a factory to make his lighting system, contracted a distributor for transportation, packaging, storage, and advertising, and hired a team of lawyers.
Tools of a Self-Starter
I setup social media profiles for Steve and manually managed some of the accounts while I used Hootsuite to manage others. I built creative social media campaigns, and I created a website for Steve using Wix.com. Pictured below is a photo from one of my social media campaigns focused on drawing attention to the Gardian Angel school bus lighting system around Christmas time. You can see the actual light making a snow angel using flour. This campaign was called "Angel Antics".
Monitoring Metrics & Harnessing the Power of the Attention
When I saw an increase in the metrics, I implemented tandem marketing tactics which led to Steve gaining the first state to permit his lighting system.
Steve was able to begin sharing his human side once again through interviews and press opportunities of which I secured. The press then led to sales opportunities. Steve used these moments as a springboard to personally install some of the lighting systems at several school districts.
Changing Minds Began
No longer a concept and now a product on entire fleets, his lighting system was easier for revisiting those that once snubbed him. Steve and his lighting system were given an unprecedented spot on the stage at a conference held only for the industry decision makers. Individuals that once shunned Steve began praising him.
The Domino Effect
To inference is not enough, I have a proven track record of marketing success as shown by the Gardian Angel® now being an approved option for school buses in 16 states (and counting)...
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