So how good are you when you have no budget?

Cap I need you to put on your thinking cap with me.

Sure, it’s sexy to work on a project for Coke, Best Buy or NBC.  But let’s be honest, that gets old. 

I have something even sweeter on my desk and I’ve decided to let you in on the project.  (I know…give, give, give!)

And don’t think I’m not going to share the wealth. I’m doing this pro bono, so I can promise you that you’re going to make just as much as I do!

What is this once in a lifetime project?  Wait for it…

We’re going to create a marketing plan for a middle school!  No, not one of those swank private schools.  This is your run of the mill public middle school.  With 30 year old auditorium seats.  Having sat in them many a time, I can assure you — this is a need, not a want.

Let me give you the facts and then I would love to let you contribute some brilliant ideas to add to the plan.

The campaign:
  Not a Bad Seat in the House (they love the pun of it!)
The goal: "Sell" 400 seats at $200 each.  Each buyer will get a plaque they can personalize that will go on the seat itself.
The budget:  Come on, it’s the public school system.  We can print some fliers or simple one color brochures and they would probably spring for some postage.
The work force:  A few teachers, the principal and a handful of parents, including moi — who somehow became in charge of this little project.

Oh yeah…and school is out the first week in June.  So our most immediate access to the most likely buyer is 2 weeks and counting.

So come on you brilliant marketers — toss some great ideas my way.  Let’s build the plan together so  there’s "not a bad seat in the house!"  (It sings, doesn’t it?)

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7 comments on “So how good are you when you have no budget?

  1. Mike says:

    Why not build a site that allows them to buy a link ?

    Kind of like

    People have sold pixels, pages and promos for a lot more than what you need to come up with.

    Or build it like the Toast people did and allow 200 local businesses to add an ad for $400 each.

    Or 400 for $200 each.

    Des Moines is full of businesses that need eyeballs to their sites.

    The Register woul surely do a writeup, which would be worth more than they paid for the ad.

    Not to mention if it goes viral and catches some national press.

    Katie Couric needs something to scoop, before they drop het like a hot rock.

    You could save her career by allowing her to be the first to interview you !

    You could buy a domain name, build a blog and add each businesses article, write up, post or whatever as soon as they send the money to you thru PayPal.

    I’d link to it and so would a lot of your readers who have blogs.

    Multiple PR4, 5 and 6 blogs linking to it would make it more than worth their time. A free news release or two would drive some eyeballs and maybe the Sethmeister would throw you a bone and link to your ingenuity.

    Guarantee that the site will be live for:

    1 year and they paid $400 per year
    2 years and they paid $200 per year
    4 years and they paid $100 per year.




  2. Mike Sansone says:

    Send each child home with a flyer and a small pillow? Flyer says buy a seat or next year bring a pillow.

  3. I’d ask some of the other members of your leadership team what ideas they have to get the money. Also, do the students have some “buy-in” to your plan. When students are “jazzed” about a project and they get to run with some of their money making ideas you get even more buy in. Perhaps you’ll need this in addition to the seats you plan to sell. I would diversify to have about three prongs plugged in to get the most “electric juice” in the short time you see for this project.

  4. A sub-tagline could be:

    Put your money where your _____ is!

  5. Mike — no money = no pillows! ;{

    Mike — I had never heard of your name on toast. Am I the only one? As for Katie — I’d save her career. What the heck. Your ideas are great — thank you!

    Robyn — We only have about 5 days of school left so we’re going to get the students involved this fall, when they can focus. Right now, it is controlled chaos at best!

    Steve — LOL! Seems like everywhere I look, you’re punchy but funny lately!


  6. Mike,

    Your idea of involving the local businesses is definitely in our plan. I had never seen before. Have I been living on an island somewhere? Does everyone else know about this?

    Thanks for all the great ideas!


  7. Robyn,

    We only have a few days left in the school year, so we’re going to get the kids fired up about it come fall.

    We’re also going to reach out to retiree teachers etc. who have invested their whole career in the school district. Hopefully they’ll want to leave a legacy at their school too.


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