What’s better than being accepted to a school you’ve never applied to? Last week attendees of the National Alliance for Public Charter Schools conference in Washington D.C. experienced a new side of Lands’ End. Weeks before, a select number of Lands’ End School Uniforms prospective clients — school administrators in the rapidly growing charter space, received an acceptance packet welcoming them to the Lands’ End Academy. Veiled as a cheeky prep school, the packet served as the invite to a myriad of activities hosted by the fictitious school. Among the activities: a VIP Detention event for the disruptors of education, held at D.C.’s notorious Huxley Library.
Upon arrival, conference attendees were intercepted by Lands’ End Academy Hall Monitors, who quickly issued them detention slips for infractions exhibited on the showroom floor; open-toed shoes, talking too loud, laughter, talking back, you name it. With each interaction the humorous hall monitor pair drove traffic to the booth.
Since April, Manifesto has been working with Lands’ End School Uniforms to build a new brand platform that would help position Lands’ End as a category thought-leader. Known for its perfect balance of pun and pedigree, the Academy is designed to champion the issues and challenges school administrators face everyday.
The goal was to create disruption, fun and affinity for Lands’ End School Uniforms through an interactive experience for the attendees. Beginning with an acceptance kit, complete with a congratulatory letter to “the most buttoned up school you’ve never heard of,” came a link where attendees could register for the VIP event that was held on July 2nd at the Huxley Library. Billed as “Detention” and designed for the rule-breakers of education, roving hall monitors intercepted attendees and drove traffic back to the booth with a simple message: “Look who got caught walking the halls? See the principal for your prize.” Each slip had a coupon for a free academy t-shirt.
In addition to the tradeshow floor activation, the Lands’ End Academy hosted “Brand Building 301”, a breakout session featuring some of the most experienced branding experts in the charter school space. Among powerful brand-building tools, school uniforms were reinforced as the fundamental building block for a distinctive brand.
Overall, the event was a great success for the Lands’ End School Uniforms brand and serves as a jumping off point for the Lands’ End Academy to expand and grow in the future. Our hope at Manifesto is that the Lands’ End Academy continues to live on and serve as a home for those innovators of private and charter education.