Local’s Call To Action Bursts Corporate Promotional Balloon
Local Activists’ Concerns Change Corporate Promotion for IT2 Movie Premiere
Last week a story post pops up from WBOC, the Flagship Cinema company’s theater in Ocean City announced a promotion for IT 2, using red balloons. They planned to place red balloons around Ocean City with a ticket voucher for the movie. Hey cool idea, the movie has that scary red balloon, it would be the first thing a marketing person would use. The issue was balloons are not just scary for people, they are deadly for wildlife.
Several people including myself immediately jumped on the article’s comment section and posted our concerns. “This is a really bad idea for our coastal areas, wildlife could ingest those balloons and die.” Everyone’s concerns were concise, and polite. Everyone’s actions went beyond just a post on social media, because that never works. This is how you make things happen.
Stacey Pixley was one of the first people to go into action “Basically last night I saw posts from Flagship Cinema about a promotion they wanted to do for the new movie IT2. Part of the promotion was sticking tickets to the movie on red balloons and putting them out in the Ocean City area for patrons to find. I shared on their Facebook page my concerns and a link to help educate them about the dangers of balloons. They shared back very politely it was a national campaign and I would need to contact corporate and told me where to do so. I wrote them an email last night and I also sent a message to Assateague Coastal Trust. I also sent a message to WBOC. Well, this morning it seemed to really blow up and a bunch of other people were on the site as well sharing their concerns and writing emails and then BAM. Promotion still on but without balloons!! Yeah!! ”
Stacey wasn’t the only person or group to spring into action. Assateague Coastal Trust & Coastkeeper and Ocean City Surfrider foundation posted links to their Facebook pages urging people to share and post their own comments. Kerrie Jones Bunting also took up the call to action on her social media sites (she’s with OP Chamber) Emails were sent to the main company, Flagship Cinema.
Later that morning the Ocean City theater posted on their Facebook page that they would cancel the balloon promotion for IT 2 and look for a better alternative. ““Due to some environmental concerns, we have decided to change this promotion,” the theater wrote. “It won’t involve balloons, but Pennywise will still be around town.” ”
They also returned emails telling everyone this would be done nationally not just along the coastal states. Thanking everyone for educating them on the harmful effects of balloons in our environment. Kathlyn Phillips ACT “Situation resolved in a few hours and the theater management admitted they learned a valuable lesson about our fragile coastal environment. “
In a matter of hours a group of concerned citizens and environmental groups educated a corporate entity on the issues with balloons, and they listened. This is unprecedented to see a corporate interest react this positive to a concerned group. The fact all of these people approached the situation with clear and concise thoughts and not crazy out of control emails filled with hateful comments. That is why the company responded the way they did, calling for action with a calm reaction is always the best way to go.
“You catch more flies with honey”