To generate excitement for Nicholas Sparks's 17th novel, THE LONGEST RIDE, PLM created high-profile events and promotions, from the hardcover release through the movie debut, in partnership with Nicholas Sparks, Walmart, Anconnect, Vudu, Professional Bull Riders, Hachette Book Group and movie studios for Nicholas Sparks films—Warner Bros, Relativity, Fox, Sony and Disney.
Kicking off the publication in September 2013, Professional Bull Riders and Walmart hosted a contest to find "PBR's Sexiest Cowboy”. Cowboy standees and end cap signs promoted the contest in Walmart stores, garnering maximum brand exposure and 2 million votes! In May 2014, the winner, Jory Markiss, was featured on the cover of an exclusive Walmart Inc. paperback edition of the novel.
That release jump-started “Nicholas Sparks Month,” the first-ever month-long author-themed promotion at Walmart spotlighting Nicholas Sparks books and movies at Walmart and Walmart.com. Walmart featured nine books and eight movies from Nicholas Sparks in its National Circular Ad and on pallet displays in nearly 2,000 stores. In addition to working with Walmart’s distributors, Spark's publisher, and multiple studios on the promotion, PLM also partnered with Walmart’s digital streaming service, Vudu on merchandising offers. Walmart's exclusive paperback edition of THE LONGEST RIDE featured a $3 Vudu credit and all eight movies were stickered with a $5 Disc to Digital Vudu credit. To encourage a Nicholas Sparks purchase, PLM also secured a Vudu landing page takeover at point of redemption, plus bundle and pricing promotions on Sparks films , including a Nicholas Sparks film rental at $.99 every Monday for the entire Nicholas Sparks Month.
PLM and The Professional Bull Riders created a custom Walmart video featuring Nicholas Sparks and Jory Markiss filmed at the annual PBR event at Madison Square Garden in January 2014. This piece featured Nicholas and Jory discussing THE LONGEST RIDE, bull riding, and the Walmart special edition. Walmart hosted this video on Walmart.com and featured it on their Facebook page, while PLM posted it on Nicholas Sparks and Hachette social media accounts.
PLM worked with our partners to build awareness of THE LONGEST RIDE, and Nicholas Sparks Month across a variety of social networks, including, Walmart, Anconnect, Vudu, Professional Bull Riders, Hachette Book Group, Warner Bros, Relativity, Fox, Sony and Disney, as well as nicholassparks.com and Nicholas Spark's quarterly newsletter, resulting in almost 100 million impressions!
PLM simultaneously partnered with Sam’s Club and Nicholas Sparks to develop an exclusive line of furniture. The Black Mountain Collection by Nicholas Sparks went on sale in all Sam’s clubs on December 26, 2014 as part of their furniture gallery promotion. The Collection which included six pieces, was featured in THE LONGEST RIDE film. To introduce the launch, Nicholas Sparks did two signings at Sam’s Club, one on January 10, 2015 in Charlotte, NC and one on January 17, 2015 in Bentonville, AR, where he also attended the Walmart Saturday Morning Meeting for corporate employees.
PLM created a custom video featuring Nicholas Sparks
and the furniture pieces for Sam’s Club TV which aired for a full month (January 2015)
in all clubs nationwide in the Entertainment area of the stores. Nicholas Sparks and
Club promoted the furniture collection across social media, garnering over 2
million impressions. Close to 11,000 pieces of furniture were sold and
sell-through was over 70% on the three strongest pieces in the collection!