Valparaiso University Starts Marketing at Birth

An Idea is Born
When recent mothers who are alumnae of Valparaiso University write into their alma mater's alumni magazine to inform their classmates about their newly-born children, the university sends the recent mothers onesies that feature the Valpo logo.

Marketers are always trying to get their name brands in front of people as early into their lives as possible. There's nothing earlier than birth -- or is there?

Baby on Board
In addition to sending onesies to newborns, what if Valpo sent expecting mothers a t-shirt that said, "Future Valpo Alum on Board." Now that's as early as marketing gets in a child's life. It's also fun and memorable, and expecting moms would show off their t-shirts just like they show off their onesies. The alumni magazine would get more alumni updates, which would in turn give Valpo's development office more chances to solicit donations from the school's alumni. Everybody wins!

Add This to Your To-Do List
How early can you get your brand name in front of your audience? This is an especially important question to ask if you sell a product or service (like a college education) that generates income for life (like tuition and then donations as an alum). Free t-shirts for expectant mothers are the easiest way. What would your brand's t-shirt say? What would your brand's onesie say? I'd love to hear your ideas.

There's never a lack of ideas.

PS Thanks to Amy McMillan and Joan Williams for inspiring this post.

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