Based on the belief that gardens create healthy communities, the Scotts’ Give Back to Growä program invited consumers to celebrate and honor individuals who take pride in giving back to their communities through gardening. The partnership between Scotts and the gardening community emphasizes the importance of corporate involvement in encouraging widespread neighborhood development and enrichment. The program awarded winners in four categories:
Scotts’ Classroom Gardener of the Year – Salutes elementary through high school teachers who have integrated a school gardening program into their curriculum.
Scotts’ Good Neighbor Gardener of the Year – Salutes gardeners who donate product from their garden to feed the hungry in their own communities through Plant a Row for the Hungry, a national campaign of the Garden Writers Association of America.
Scotts’ Outstanding Young Gardener of the Year – Salutes young people, up to and including the age of 18, who greatly contribute to gardening programs, either on their own initiatives or in association with programs such as the Future Farmers of America (FFA) or 4-H Club.
Scotts’ Urban Greenup Gardener of the Year – Salutes volunteers who have helped beautify a neighborhood within their city limits, and in the process significantly contributed to city pride.
After reviewing the entries, Scotts also awarded a “Life Achievement Gardener of the Year” award. Winners and runners-up in each category received cash prizes and products from The Scotts Company along with public recognition for their work.
- Design a program that would give back to the community by encouraging people to honor individuals who positively affect their communities through gardening.
- Increase consumer awareness of the “Scotts” name through community involvement.
- Encourage consumers to get involved in gardening that makes a difference in their communities.
- Introduce the program at the annual Philadelphia Flower Show including a presentation at the media breakfast.
- Call for nominations through extensive media relations, Web site marketing and viral marketing through interested third parties (FFA, Garden Writers Association, Plant a Row for the Hungry, 4-H Club).
- Select qualified judges who would help spread the word through their contacts and associated media outlets.
- Award 2000 winners at the 2001 Philadelphia Flower Show while introducing details of the 2001 program.
- Place winners’ stories in long-lead publications and on national morning television programs.
RESULTS AND EVALUATION
The program was introduced in March 2000. The winners have been selected, but will not be announced publicly until March 2001. The results are based on activity leading up to the winner announcement and do not include winner publicity that will be placed in the first quarter of 2001.
Through November 2000, the program has generated over 34,192,864 million consumer impressions for Scotts through print coverage including hits in The Dallas Morning News, The Philadelphia Inquirer, San Francisco Examiner, Denver Post and The Columbus Dispatch.
The publicity efforts for the winners has just started, but we already have commitments from several long-lead consumer publications and “Good Morning America.”
The program generated 355 entries in four categories.
The program generated over 500 requests for information through the Web site and the toll-free telephone line.
Judges included the director of the New York Botanical Garden, the president of the National Gardening Association, the national CBS gardening segment host and the editor of Better Homes & Gardens.