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June 11, 2015

Walgreens Collaborates with the 'Challenged' App to Drive Video Customer Engagement

We all have become aware of the power of video to engage people and get them to act. As a marketing tool for charitable as well as commercial initiatives, the fascination of marketers with how to replicate the enormous appeal and involvement that last year’s ALS Ice Bucket Challenge generated set a high bar.  An example of how the confluence of social media and video are being used to drive customer reach and engagement comes from Walgreens, the largest drugstore chain in the U.S., which has announced that is collaborating with the new social competition app, Challenged, to bring summer beauty tips to life.

As noted in the announcement, similar to the idea behind the Ice Bucket Challenge, the appropriately named Challenged platform is designed to deliver via a mobile app, “an easily executed social challenge creation and fulfillment experience that unites socially-activated users, celebrity influencers like Nash Grier, Lele Pons and Cameron Dallas, as well as charities to drive healthy competition and positive social change – all from one destination.”

Users of the Challenge app can now find it populated with a challenge from Walgreens, which tasks users to bring their best summer beauty tip to life in a 12-second video using either CIRCA Beauty or Nonie Creme Colour Prevails products available exclusively at Walgreens.

Beauty expert Lauria Locsmondy of the Walgreens Social and Content creative team will judge the Top 3 “viewed” Beauty Challenge videos submitted based on the criteria below:

  • Use of CIRCA and/or Colour Prevails items as primary component of the look (requirement of contest)
  • Clear steps to achieve the look
  • Summer-relevant look

The top submission chosen will win an assortment of the best-selling products from the two beauty lines.

“Video continues to be a compelling way to tell a great story. Today, more than ever, user-generated content inspires action and connects brands with customers,” said Adam Kmiec, Senior Director of Mobile, Social and Content Marketing for Walgreens. “We believe the Challenged collaboration will be an effective and unique approach to reaching a key consumer audience and driving omni-channel conversions.”

If you have a flair for video and wish to participate in this 30-day video challenge, it is running from June 9 through July 8 with the official Walgreens beauty challenge hashtag: #BeautyChallengeContest

From a marketing perspective, you have to like the ingenuity of the Challenged app.  It is an updated twist on a series of efforts over the years to engage people via a competition or other type of loyalty incentive program to do well by doing good. It is also playing upon people’s vanity and the seemly insatiable appetite to go video in the hope of going viral. 

Since this is Walgreen’s, no doubt the scrutiny of the results by marketers will be as intense if not more so than that of those providing submissions. Clearly the next wave in the marriage of brand loyalty and charitable giving is going to be mobile and video based.  How -- challenged by getting the mix right on what it takes to really engage people and get them to pay-to-play -- has always been the tough part of efforts to mix business with things that make people feel better about themselves. 

The only fault in seeing if this platform is ‘challenged’ or not as a way to enhance customer reach and engagement is that an Android version of the app is not part of the Walgreens effort. However, since iOS users have trended toward higher online expenditures and more engagement with mobile marketing, it’s not a bad way to test the waters.  

Currently available for iOS, the Challenged app lets individuals and organizations start their own social media challenges, or engage with brands and influencers to compete for prizes and benefit charities. Social-based competition can now be supported by a robust platform that dramatically simplifies challenge management and takes away distractions from the challenge content itself.

Challenged is available for free in the iTunes App Store. For more information, visit www.challengedapp.com.

Edited by Rory J. Thompson

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