In its first return to experiential since the pandemic, State Farm wanted to push the boundaries of innovation with a groundbreaking hybrid campaign targeted at Millennial and Gen Z audiences. The objective was to create brand awareness within these demographics and generate serious leads. State Farm wanted to feature two of its largest icons — Kansas City Chiefs QB Patrick Mahomes and Green Bay Packers QB Aaron Rodgers — as they were scheduled to face each other for the first time since becoming brand ambassadors. The challenge was breaking through the noise directed at its coveted target audience and moving beyond State Farm’s traditional marketing methods to develop a high-tech gamified experience that would attract and resonate with Millennial and Gen Z audiences. The objective was to create engagement mechanisms that would reinforce State Farm’s brand with Millennial and Gen Z target audiences by connecting the campaign to its ambassador relationships and commercials.
In line with these objectives, State Farm created the following measurable goals:
To best connect with a Millennial and Gen Z audience, State Farm created a two-prong campaign of digital and physical experiences, bolstered by partnerships with athletes, entertainers, and TikTok influencers. Over the course of four days, players scanned football shaped QR codes available on the #TeamStateFarm Football Find microsite, the State Farm Newsroom site, the brand's social media channels, and physical signage around Kansas City. Unique from other multicity AR treasure hunts, the Football Find was not limited to geofencing or areas of certain cities, making the experience an innovation in technology and accessibility. A landing page featured quarterbacks Aaron Rodgers and Patrick Mahomes and gave players a preview of what was to come. Rodgers and Mahomes' presence was especially buzzworthy as the campaign launched days ahead of their face-off in the Packers-Chief game on November 7, 2022. Registration gave way to a short tutorial on how to use their devices' cameras to capture virtual footballs. Tapping the football burst it into digital confetti, and successfully acquired footballs were tracked in an in-app wallet. After five footballs, players achieved "Rookie" status and could progress through the three levels as they caught more. Each challenge completion was rewarded with a ticket for different giveaways; while footballs were up for grabs, users could continue unlocking higher levels for increasingly impressive prizes. They ranged from gift cards to branded swag autographed by Rodgers and Mahomes and non-fungible tokens (NFTs) by renowned artists. Once the three levels were completed, players still had access to giveaways if they shared a generated link on their social media. If 10 followers joined, the player was rewarded with another chance at winning the highest-level giveaways. For added in-person connection, fans in Kansas City could visit on-site redemption trailers to trade their virtual footballs for physical prizes. The various tailgate-inspired experiences starred none other than Jake From State Farm himself. Alongside photo dome and augmented reality experiences, the famous brand ambassador met fans, took photos, and hosted the massive Team State Farm Football Find Extravaganza. As an icon of popular culture and famously quotable marketing presence, Jake From State Farm's in-person contact with fans further elevated the hybrid nature of the campaign, bridging the gap between physical and digital. His appearances set the bar for how a brand ambassador should be strategically utilized in an experiential campaign. Ultimately, the Team State Farm Football Find brought attention to State Farm's time-tested brand, ambassador relationships, and popular commercials, creating new customer connections and increasing brand affinity amongst new generations.
The #TeamStateFarm Football Find campaign went viral, far exceeding State Farm’s expectations and goals! It electrified the Millennial and Gen Z target audience, producing never-before-seen results from a hybrid campaign. The campaign’s short, four-day duration made the results even more impressive. At its inception, the goal for the experience was 10,000 users who would collect 500,000 virtual footballs. At the end of the campaign, 1.3 million footballs were collected amongst 43,000 unique users, who produced more than 33,000 app shares. That is 3,000+% over the initial campaign goals. The statistics speak for themselves: there were 42 placements and 110 million impressions which yielded $3.25 million in earned media value. A player's average visit duration was 14 minutes and 60,000 prizes were claimed. These impressive numbers all culminated in a staggering 610 million brand impressions. The AR treasure hunt, backdropped by influencers, entertainers, and commercial spots, connected with young sports fans and effectively built new customer connections and brand affinity. The #TeamStateFarm Football Find successfully developed brand awareness and interest for State Farm, and created a marketing technique that will thrive with the Millennial and Gen Z market.