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Beyond Booksellers: The Expansion Of Unique Summer Reading Activations

July 18, 2019 Charlene Sterphone


Relaxing with a book on the beach is one of summer’s greatest simple pleasures. But for parents with school-age children, keeping kids focused on reading to avoid the summer slump can sometimes be a challenge. Local libraries and booksellers, like Scholastic and Barnes & Noble, have historically offered summer reading challenges to keep young readers engaged. But this year’s unique digital summer reading activations have expanded beyond book vendors to include a restaurant, food manufacturer and even a bank.

Unique Summer Reading Activation #1: Chuck E. Cheese Reading Rewards

Chuck E. Cheese offers a variety of rewards calendars and behavior charts designed to be a “fun and free way to motivate” children to do chores, be team players, complete homework and more. Offered in both English and Spanish, the Chuck E. Cheese Reading Rewards program encourages parents to download a free, printable calendar from their website and mark off each day their child reads. If the child reads each day for two weeks, the Reading Rewards calendar can be redeemed for 10 free play points that can be used toward Chuck E. Cheese games or food.

Unique Summer Reading Activation #2: Kellogg’s Feeding Reading

Kellogg’s has partnered with Penguin Random House to develop a promotion allowing parents to earn free books to keep for their children or donate to a school or local library of their choosing. Parents can participate in the Feeding Reading promotion by making qualifying purchases from the Kellogg’s family of brands (including select cereals, Pop-Tarts, Eggo waffles, Keebler cookies and others), creating a Kellogg’s Family Rewards account and uploading their receipts to receive credits for up to 10 books this summer. A credit for a free book with no shipping fees is issued for each qualifying Kellogg’s product purchased, and 125 book titles are available for all reading levels.

Unique Summer Reading Activation #3: TD Bank’s Summer Reading Program

summer reading

TD Bank has created a summer reading promotion designed to encourage kids to keep reading over the summer as they learn about the importance of saving money. Kids in kindergarten through fifth grade can participate in the TD Bank Summer Reading Program by printing out the downloadable summer reading form from the TD Bank website and listing the names of the books they have read this summer. Once the child reads ten books, they can bring the completed form along with a savings chart (where they can color to track progress on different items they are saving for) to receive a $10 credit to be deposited in their new or existing TD Simple Savings accounts.

Kid-Focused Campaigns Can Help Reach And Shape Tomorrow’s Consumers

With their ease of use, these digital summer reading activations clearly target parents of young and school-age children, but the campaigns also set the stage for exposure to a new generation. With the prevalence of nostalgia-focused marketing, connections made with brands during childhood can endure as kids get older and make their own purchasing decisions, and these bonds may help influence buying choices when they have families of their own. Brands that focus on children today, potentially by rewarding them for summer reading efforts, can help create the loyal consumers of tomorrow.

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About the Author

Charlene Sterphone

Charlene Sterphone is a Marketing Manager at Digital Media Solutions (DMS), the fastest-growing independent digital performance marketing company. DMS helps its clients accelerate growth by deploying diversified and data-driven customer acquisition solutions that deliver scalable, sustainable and measurable marketing results. DMS performance marketing solutions connect the right consumers with the right offers at the right time to achieve the marketing objectives of our clients. DMS is continually innovating to provide new and emerging media and technology solutions that minimize waste and maximize results across the most competitive industries. Since its inception, DMS has demonstrated incredible year-over-year growth which has earned recognition on the Inc. 5000 list in 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017 and 2018.

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