Farewell, Dandelion: Crayola hits the mark with fan engagement

Sarah Sampson
By Sarah Sampson
April 10th, 2017

It’s crazy to think my 2-year-old nephew will grow up in a world with one less yellow crayon in his box, but alas, here we are.

On March 31, for the first time in history, Crayola retired a crayon color. Sweet, bright Dandelion is now on his retirement tour, adding one last swipe of color before being replaced later this season (by a shade of blue, no less).

I have to applaud Crayola for how they’ve rolled out this big news. From media relations to social media, they have certainly made sure Dandelion is not going away quietly. The timing was perfect with National Crayon Day (surely one of those holidays many people wouldn’t think twice about otherwise). They played up the day and the announcement early in the week to drum up more interest, and received national coverage from USA Today, New York Times and even US Weekly. From there, the company quickly started trending across social media with speculation as to which color would be retiring, essentially leaving the world at the edge of its seat waiting for the big news.

When the announcement happened, with a Facebook Live from their Times Square celebration, they had thousands of followers watching the video. And, that announcement video has 224K views now, which is a lot when you think about the fact that it’s all over a single crayon color. As more brands and companies try to break into the Facebook Live and Instagram Live world, Crayola reminds us exactly how it should be done – with an interesting announcement and short video time.

But what’s really fun to watch is how they’re extending the life of this news with “Dan D’s” retirement tour on Facebook and Twitter; which includes a fun, interactive contest for fans. The tour, which officially kicked off on April 1 in New York City, will continue for four weeks, with stops in Orlando and Toronto, before heading home to Allentown, PA and finally the Crayola factory and headquarters in Easton, PA. Dandelion fans are encourage to geotag a photo of the beloved crayon in their communities and use #CelebrateDandelion for a chance to have Dandelion add their hometown to his major farewell tour.

If there’s one thing we know at Vehr, it’s that contests and giveaways on social can bump engagement and interaction like nothing else, and Crayola will now have a large bank of user generated content to pull from in the future.

Finally, after all is said and done, and Dan D is quietly enjoying his new retirement life, Crayola will call upon its fans once again to help name the newest crayon color in the box, another shade of blue. We can’t wait to see what they have up their sleeves for that rookie tour!

By | 2017-04-10T17:17:26+00:00 April 10th, 2017|Marketing Communications, Media Relations, Social Media, Vr3|Comments Off on Farewell, Dandelion: Crayola hits the mark with fan engagement

About the Author:

Sarah Sampson
Sarah strives to find creative ways to bring clients’ stories to life, whether it’s media relations, social media strategy, event coordination or content marketing. In addition to helping clients create winning recipes for their campaigns, she is known around the office for her own superb baking skills. A Chicago native and diehard Cubs and Blackhawks fan, Sarah graduated from Lewis University with a degree in communications and minor in marketing. Prior to becoming a team member at Vehr, she interned at various companies, including HealthTrust Purchasing Group, Chicago Fire Soccer Club and JSH&A Communications, where she assisted with anything and everything from event planning to press releases and social media content. When she’s not at the Vehr office, you can find her training for her next half marathon around Mount Lookout with her giant Goldendoodle, and favorite Vehr office dog, Tigger.