Safety angle puts backpack solidly in front of the media

My Child's Pack is a full-size, lightweight ballistic backpack, designed by fathers and former deputies Joe Curran and Mike Pelonzi, for kids in middle school and high school, in light of recent school shootings.

My Child's Pack is a full-size, lightweight ballistic backpack, designed by fathers and former deputies Joe Curran and Mike Pelonzi, for kids in middle school and high school, in light of recent school shootings.

The company launched a Web site and sought to position itself as a back-to-school retailer for families with middle- and high-school students. "Our goal was to create something the kids could take with them and have an active role in their defense," said MJ Safety Solutions marketing director Bill Barbin. "Our initial attempt was to create something for school safety. At some level, we'll look into marketing to adults."

Idea: "My efforts as a realtor have been [to use] grassroots Web site campaigns, to start with a Web site and create the buzz," said Barbin. He sought to use the site http://www.mychildspack.com/ to prompt sales, which could generate revenue to support print efforts. "We'd like to take this from a purely organic Internet marketing approach to print advertising. We'll target magazines in our family audience, such as Parenting and Cosmo."

Tools: Traditional media relations has been a priority. After a Boston Herald story on My Child's Pack, local Fox and ABC affiliates followed with pieces. Not far behind were CNN, Reuters, and BBC, among others. The company has simultaneously launched a blog, YouTube video, and MySpace page, and focused on ensuring its Web site had a good organic ranking on search terms.

Measurement: Barbin said the company will measure success in sales. "If it saves just one life, it would make us happy," he said.

Company:  MJ Safety Solutions
Campaign:  Launch of My Child's Pack
PR team:  In-house
Other marketing:  Advertising
Launch:  August 7
Budget:  Under $10,000

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