Hallmark gets kids into texting with new mobile product

Hallmark has a new way for tweens to keep in touch. Released in Canada on Tuesday, Text Bands are bracelets that display text messages aimed at what the greeting card manufacturer calls the “pre-cell phone” market. Dan Bengert, director of advertising and consumer insight for Hallmark Canada, explained children want to own tablets and smartphones. […]

Hallmark has a new way for tweens to keep in touch. Released in Canada on Tuesday, Text Bands are bracelets that display text messages aimed at what the greeting card manufacturer calls the “pre-cell phone” market.

Dan Bengert, director of advertising and consumer insight for Hallmark Canada, explained children want to own tablets and smartphones. Parents, however, may not want kids to have their own gadgets because of cost, over-use or safety concerns.

“The product addresses those issues,” said Bengert. “We understand how important it is for young people to communicate with their friends. This is a fun way they can do so without having the responsibility of a cell phone at a young age.”

Designed for kids between six and 12 years old, the bracelets require actual physical contact between sender and receiver even though messages get sent wirelessly. Users have to fist bump or high five to share messages, lessening the danger of communication with strangers, the company said.

Hallmark started its pre-launch PR campaign for Text Bands in May by giving away 200 free bracelets at a One Direction concert in Toronto. The company also tested Text Bands with young consumers at Canada’s Wonderland near Toronto and at the Greater Vancouver Zoo.

Bengert said the company is hoping the new product will help expose the Hallmark brand to an upcoming segment of consumers.

“For most kids, cards are not something they generally will use,” he said. “This is a way Hallmark is demonstrating the relevance of its brand.”

Text Bands debuted in the U.S. in July with a PR campaign featuring teen pop star Cody Simpson.

Brands Articles

Kraft Singles plays mind games in online effort

Cheese brand introduces "A craving is a powerful thing" tagline

McDonald’s tricks consumers with ‘salad society’ pop-up

Fast food chain creates a fake restaurant brand to get consumers to try its salads

Infinity tops on web for ‘virtual tire kicking’

High-end brand edges out Jeep and Lincoln in annual J.D. Power study

Running on empty: How to deal with professional burnout

In the fast paced world of change, how do change agents prevent burnout?

Air Miles promo gives Canadians 19,000 reasons to smile

Loyalty card program rewards members with flights, consumer appliances, barbecues

Quaker looks to spark Twitter conversations with new effort

PepsiCo brand uses social to encourage Canadians to do more of what matters

Canada’s Hottest Ads – The good and bad of Mother’s Day ads

Rain 43's John Farquhar finds mom spots both charming and predictable

Lasik MD campaign has its sights on millennials

Print, direct mail, OOH, radio touts financial benefits of laser vision correction

How to improve in-store signage

Signs alert shoppers to deals and promotions, but also express your brand