by Dean Witherspoon   Dean's profile on LinkedIn  

Heading into the home stretch of the 2016 Presidential campaign is an ideal time to pull out old glory as a promotional theme. And if you’d rather avoid politics, see if there’s another time of year you can leverage. Some ideas:

  • Election Day Campaign. Run a turn-out-the-vote style campaign, but gear it toward getting registrations. Offer a special signup incentive to those who register after fulfilling their civic duty. (Polling stations often provide voters with a sticker or some other item showing they voted that day.)
  • Veterans Day Tribute. Recruit veterans and/or local politicians to a kick-off or wrap-up event; include a speech about the importance of physical activity — both for the armed services and citizens.
  • Flag Day Walk. Host a red, white, and blue kickoff event on June 14, providing each walker with a miniature flag or flag-imprinted items. Play the National Anthem or God Bless America before beginning or to wrap up the walk. Award each participant a red, white, and blue lanyard.
  • Memorial Day/July 4/President’s Day. Select any of these days (or a nearby date) as mid-points for a special event to give the campaign a boost. Invite state representatives to lead a walking/jogging event; offer brief remarks and hand out awards/door prizes.
  • National Physical Fitness and Sports Month (May). Start the program early in May so you can finish by mid-June, before summer vacations begin. Set weekly goals for distance, and post a large US map showing where participants should be each day if they were on pace to complete the program in 50 days.
  • Uncle Sam Wants You! Use this recognized icon on posters and other promotional items. Rent an Uncle Sam costume and roam your worksite handing out promotions and registering people on the spot. Distribute lanyards or other signup incentives.
  • Home State Signup. Challenge employees or members to recruit the most people from their state. Award prizes to the state registrants with the highest percentage relative to eligible participants from that state.
  • Apple Pie Promotion. Ask your food service provider to create a healthy apple dessert and give samples to those who register over the noon hour. Use the slogan “as American as apple pie” to draw people in for the 1-day event.

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