During the Back-to-School marketing season, pilot ran several ads promoting its G2 Pen as the “Official Pen of Overachievers.” It’s another one of those claims that can’t be proved or fact checked, but they did throw in a testimonial by television writer Shonda Rimes as proof that at least one overachiever considers the G2 the pen.

As part of this campaign, Pilot is offering a $50,000 G2 Overachievers Grant to someone who has overachieved by helping others. I happen to have a sister that fits that category, so I looked up the nominating information. I was shocked to see that the entry needs to be a 1000 word handwritten essay!

I have good penmanship and can write without many scratch-outs or errors, but I think I am in the minority these days. I can’t imagine reading hundreds (thousands?) of entries by hand to come up with a winner. 

But what an authentic thing for this brand to do. Of course a pen company would want you to handwrite the essay. I’ll even venture to say that the winner’s entry will be written with a G2. It ties together perfectly.

Pilot is going to have extra steps and time involved in conducting a contest this way, but is a wise investment to link their product and their promotion. What can you do that may involve more effort, but makes a stronger statement about the values of your organization? How can you infuse authenticity in your promotion and events? G2 has overachieved in this category and can offer lessons for you to follow.

beth triplett

About the Author leadership dots by dr. beth triplett

Dr. beth triplett is the owner of leadership dots, offering coaching, training and consulting for new supervisors. She also shares daily lessons on her leadershipdots blog. Her work is based on the leadership dots philosophy that change happens through the intentional connecting of small steps in the short term to the big picture in the long term.

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