The consumer cut flower care campaign, www.flowrmd.com , developed by the Flower Promotion Organization (FPO) for Valentine’s Day was a resounding success and helped consumers have a better experience with the flowers they purchased and received. Through consumer media press releases, TV exposures, live TV demonstrations and pick up by many Internet sites, the message showing the simple care steps consumers should take to enhance their enjoyment of flowers generated over 30-million consumer impressions in a 10-day period before and after Valentine’s Day.
"Many consumers only purchase or receive flowers once a year, at Valentine’s Day. If they have a bad experience with them, they’ll be less likely to purchase again during the year, so we felt it was important for our industry to provide information to help the consumer improve their satisfaction and enjoyment,” said Will Carlson, managing director of the FPO.
The simple steps included in the Flower Care Tip Sheet were put together with the support of Floralife and Pokon Crysal and presented by flower doctor Bridget Behe, PhD at Michigan State University, in both print and pre-recorded streaming video that the TV and Internet sites could run.
“As industry professionals we take for granted that consumers know this basic care information, but we found that many consumers don’t have even this basic knowledge, like using clean containers, using professionally prepared flower food, changing the water regularly or re-cutting the stems,” said Behe. “This campaign was a great opportunity to reach these consumers and help them have a better experience with their flowers.”
In addition to the media campaign, the FPO also hosted the www.flowrmd.com  Web site where all of this information was available. An added element was the toll-free call center, (888) FLOWRMD, where experts were available to answer care questions from consumers on February 13 and 14, 2006. And any E-mail addresses captured on the Web site or by the call center received follow up
E-mails on February 16, 18 and 20, 2006, with specific care activities they should be performing on their Valentine’s Day flowers that day.
The results exceeded expectations, with the message being picked up by over 30 daily and 50 weekly newspapers, 26 TV stations including two national networks, and 175 feature, general interest and broadcast websites throughout the nation.
Retailers were encouraged to download the Tip Sheet, putting their own contact information on them, to provide to their customers. In addition, they had the ability to hot link to www.flowrmd.com  from their own sites to provide this care information to their Web site visitors.
“The FPO has arrived on the national level with a communication model that can be used to raise consumer awareness for cut flowers, not only for holidays, but for everyday enjoyment,” said Stan Pohmer, executive director of the FPO. He added, “Based on the excellent support and enthusiasm from retailers and suppliers and our success with this campaign, we’ll be re-directing more of our resources and focus to these affordable methods of consumer message delivery and actively engaging our industry in the FPO’s efforts to help build consumption of cut flowers throughout the year.”