Nine months after launching the HDX Dragon, Hewlitt-Packard faced a quandary: Sales of the feature-packed laptop were underwhelming. The company took action by partnering with Buzz Corps to create a social media campaign that targeted 31 influential bloggers. Dubbed 31 Days of the Dragon, it gave each blogger the opportunity to host a week-long contest in which one of their readers would win an HDX Dragon.

Mack Collier outlines the campaign's spectacular ROI in a post at his Viral Garden blog:

  • Sales of the HDX Dragon increased by 84 percent.
  • Overall PC sales increased by 10 percent.
  • Traffic to jumped by 14 percent.

According to Hewlitt-Packard, "[W]e tracked well over 380,000 links on Google using the exact phrase '31 Days of the Dragon' with no media spend and the estimated collective reach is well in excess of 49 million from the 31 participating sites, reciprocal links and other sites covering/mentioning the giveaway since its inception." Not too shabby.

"Overall," notes Collier, "the results are very impressive, but not shocking to those of us that are active in this space. What I would like to see HP do next is use the success of the '31 Days of the Dragon' promotion as incentive to develop stronger ties with bloggers, especially the company's blogging evangelists."

And this concept leads right to your Marketing Inspiration: "It's great to boost awareness/sales by giving stuff away," says Collier, "but simply taking the time to create and cultivate relationships with bloggers and blogging customers can work wonders as well."

More Inspiration:
Elaine Fogel: Marketers: Are We Burying Our Heads in the Sand?
Peter Kim: 133,000,000
Susan Solomon: What 18 Students Can Teach Us All

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