Manufacturing entrepreneur and serial business owner Chris Graff approached The TASC Group with the goal of creating a $500,000 competition to identify the strongest business plan to source and convert New York City’s recycled waste for use in a manufacturing product. The resulting campaign has earned the top prize in the “Contest or Giveaway” category of the PR Daily Awards.
The winning business would operate in NYC, creating jobs locally and selling its product to the largest potential market. TASC was engaged to design the NYC Curb-To-Market Challenge (CTMC), including contest timeline, communications materials, partnership, stakeholder recruitment and development, website creation and applicant recruitment. The agency was also tasked with turning Graff into an expert in recycling.
TASC began with research to understand the NYC recycling landscape; it also established relationships with key stakeholders in the recycling and circular economy space. Three primary target demographics were selected based on their likely interest in the competition: recycling advocates, manufacturing and efficiency experts and prospective university-affiliated applicants (like students, professors and researchers).
Green, design and sustainability-focused social media influencers were identified to boost interest among the target groups; the team also partnered with the hosts of Circular City Week to maximize the impact of the launch. TASC engaged nearly 50 universities and, through Circular City Week, put CTMC in front of more than 2,000 industry thought leaders and experts. Media placements in major trade publications also got the word out.
Dozens of submissions followed from five countries, narrowed down by the judges to six finalists, then to two co-winners (each receiving a $250,000 equity investment). More coverage was pitched and earned to spotlight the winners. Overall, TASC’s publicity work resulted in millions of media impressions.
Congratulations to Kaitlin Stewart Hollander and Nico Ericksen-Deriso.