February 17th, 2011

Why Coke, Juicy Juice, Odwalla Are Taking a Walk in the Woods

Advertising Age

Marketers are seeing the forest for the trees—and finding a willing partner in a most unusual place: the woods.

To help them connect with consumers at the local level and at the same time align with environmental causes, brands such as Coca-Cola, North Face and Odwalla are hooking up with cash-strapped state parks, sponsoring playgrounds, reforestation efforts and maps.

The matchmaker? Government Solutions Group. “We essentially act as broker between state parks and corporations,” said Shari Boyer, CEO of GSG. “The parks need funding and exposure, and brands need the visitors that the state parks represent,” she said. Dealt a blow by the recession, “state parks are used to getting a budget from their state legislature that all they have to do is execute. But as those budgets decrease, they have to find smarter ways to do things,” she said. “As you can imagine, parks’ budgets are decimated right now. So when a brand steps in and helps, it becomes even more significant in this day and age.”

Read more:  http://adage.com/article?article_id=148822

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