Back in April, Tide began a social promotion on Facebook and Twitter to support Team USA by asking fans to share stories about what the colors of the American flag mean to them, and the stories flowed in.
Some 1,500 of those submissions were printed on swatches of red, white and blue fabric and sewn together to create a 117-foot by 52-foot rendition of the American flag. The flag was revealed on July 3, laid out across the lawn in New York City’s Bryant Park as the centerpiece of a daylong event. Each swatch of fabric featured the contributor’s photo, name, city, state and a brief description of their story.
“It is safe to say that social has changed all consumers’ lives and how we communicate,” Sarah Pasquinucci, a spokesperson for parent Procter & Gamble, said. “Therefore, it has dramatically changed how we market our products as well. We want to connect with our consumers in the right place, at the right time, and with the right message and social has given us more opportunities to do so.”
Tide drew people to the event with signage around the park, as well as street teams intercepting people around the area to come see the flag. At the event, attendees could get their photos taken with the flag and were encouraged to write their own stories on pieces of fabric supplied by Tide. Some of those stories will make their way to London after being printed on smaller flags, she said.
As part of the promotion, “My Story. Our Flag.” Tide partnered with three Olympic athletes who have shared their stories, which appear on a dedicated webpage. Tide is an official Olympics sponsor through its corporate P&G sponsorship.
The three include, Lopez Lomong, a distance runner, was a “Lost Boy of Sudan” who came to America and ultimately became the American Flag bearer for the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games. Henry Cejudo was born to Mexican parents, wrestled to stay out of trouble and ultimately became the youngest American wrestler to win an Olympic Gold medal. Sarah Hammer, a cyclist, who was inspired during the 2004 Athens Games, to make a comeback after watching her teammates and competitors race. She proudly made the 2008 Olympic team.
The promotion will continue online through the London 2012 Olympic Games. People can submit stories via the app labeled “Join Our Flag” on Tide’s Facebook page or by tweeting their story using the hashtag #TideFlag.
As for the large flag, “we are in the process of determining where the flag will go after this event, but we know that we need to do something meaningful with it. It tells the story of so many Americans so it should be stored or displayed in a noteworthy place,” Pasquinucci said.