Student Price Card's #RealStudentProblems

Student Price Card (SPC) is a long-standing student tradition in Canada. SPC's goal was to evolve its business from being primarily a saving card to being a loyalty and lifestyle card.

One significant change for the 2014/15 school year was SPC's desire to move to an approach that put digital and social media at the core of its activities. In previous years, events and on-campus activations were key drivers in the campaign, but the central role of digital and social media in students' lives meant the plan needed to evolve.

To evolve from being a pure discount card and move toward being a lifestyle and loyalty program, the campaign had to be grounded in a proposition that went beyond a savings message for college and university students.

Rethink determined that students would place greater value on SPC if it stopped talking only about how the card would save them money, and started talking about how it could help them have a better student life.

Everything came to life under the idea of #RealStudentProblems.

Phase one, in mid-August, seeded the hashtag #RealStudentProblems. Meme-style images and GIFs showed humorous comments on everyday student problems like paying tuition and eating cereal every single meal.

For the September/October acquisition phase, a digital hub showcased these problems. Students themselves could contribute their own examples. The hashtag quickly built momentum and Rethink developed custom social posts for retail partners, featuring problems these brands could help solve.

The idea came to life on campus with activations. In one, McDonald's surprised tired, hungry students just before early morning classes with breakfast. These activations were filmed and then spread out online.

Digital banners rounded out the plan featuring retail partners' products. SPC extended the #RealStudentProblems through their website, Twitter and Instagram.

The activity on Facebook generated over 18 million impressions, almost 1.8 million content interaction and 800,000 video views. Twitter drove 2.2 million impressions and 880,000 content interactions.