Mobile Marketing Platform: AFRC rolls out new tool in its recruiting arsenal
By Master Sgt. Chance Babin
/ Published May 23, 2018
Air Force Reserve Command Recruiting Service has a new weapon in its recruiting arsenal with the 2018 launch of interactive mobile marketing platforms, to be featured at air shows and other AFRC recruiting event.
The MMP is a marketing tool that will increase awareness and audience engagement, generate leads and educate influencers about the Air Force Reserve. Recruiting teams are encouraged to use the various attractions of the MMPs to actively engage with potential candidates.
“RS leadership was looking for a new mobile marketing platform that would give the recruiting team at events across the country the ability to better engage with their audience,” said Dean Harris, account manager with Blaine Warren Advertising, AFRC’s advertising agency. “Recruiting is about connecting with the right person at the right time to reach people who are ready to join, but it is also about engaging with the youth market and influencers to plant seeds for future opportunities for recruiting.”
The MMP is equipped with large high definition touchscreen that feature interactive quizzes and games, and a photo booth for attendees to take photos against pre-loaded Air Force Reserve branded backdrops. It also features a pull-up bar for those looking for something more physical. A unique feature on the MMP is a charging station to charge mobile devices as well as a proximity notifications beacon that sends out messages inviting attendees to visit the Air Force Reserve MMP.
“The new MMP activation area allows for this type of direct engagement where recruiters are able to have meaningful conversations to find individuals who are currently interested in the Air Force Reserve, as well as to answer questions about opportunities that the Air Force Reserve has to offer for down the road,” Harris said.
The MMP first debuted this year at the Luke Air Force Base air show in Arizona, and later at the March Air Reserve Base air show in California, with great initial results.
“I can tell you it’s outstanding. It creates interaction with the crowd that the recruiter can use as a tool to actually engage with potential candidates,” said Chief Master Sgt. Alex Brown, AFRC’s superintendent of western recruiting. “The days of sitting behind a table and being reactive are over. You have to get out and meet and greet people and that’s what we do as recruiters anyway.”
Brown and his team at March ARB got the opportunity to work the MMP at their air show. He noted they had more people come through and talk to recruiters than any air show he had ever seen.
“The photos, the charging station, the pull up bar and the video gaming and quiz area, it gives a recruiter a way to start a conversation about the Air Force Reserve,” Brown said. “I think it’s outstanding. The whole mission is to get up in front of as many people as possible who we feel could join the Air Force Reserve and this equipment allows us to do that.”
Maj. Gen. Randall A. Ogden, 4th Air Force commander, performed a joint mass enlistment at the March ARB air show, where he swore in 100 new recruits into the Air Force Reserve, Air Force and Army as part of the 100 year celebration of March Air Field. Afterward, he and 4th Air Force Command Chief, Chief Master Sgt. Timothy White toured the MMP and had their photos taken in the photo booth.
“I think the mobile marketing platform is a great way to reach out to people and the photo booth provides them with a nice picture to take home and remember the Air Force Reserve,” Ogden said. “The gaming and quiz area also provides a great way to connect with young people and get them interested in an Air Force Reserve career.”
MMPs come in both large and small versions to accommodate different types of events. Both have similar offerings to the recruiter and the attendee and each is a huge upgrade to what was used in the past.
“The Air Force Reserve MMP compares really well to the activations from other recruiting branches and has some unique elements such as the charging station that none of the other branches have,” Harris said
For Master Sgt. Jacinto Nunez, AFRC RS, NCOIC of the Advertising and Marketing Branch, getting to see the MMP up close and personal made a lasting impression.
“It’s a real game changer and a big upgrade on how Reserve recruiting conducts business,” Nunez said. “It changes the way we engage with the public by interacting more and gives the recruiters more time to talk about the Air Force Reserve to help build those relationships as well.
AFRC RS is making a concentrated push on air shows this year and having the MMPs will help recruiters get the word out during these large events. And Nunez promises a totally different experience than those of the past.
“They can expect to see all recruiters running a portion of the MMP to provide superb customer service while educating the public on what type of business the Air Force Reserve is in,” Nunez said. “Whether it’s teaching them about the Reserve cyber security mission, working the photo booth, or assisting attendees with the pull up bar challenge, a recruiter will be there creating awareness about the Air Force Reserve’s recruiting needs.
“Reserve recruiting service will continue to strive toward delivering the message on what it takes to be in the Air Force Reserve and how joining can be a life changing experience for the better when making that decision to sign up.”
(Babin is noncommissioned officer in charge of public affairs for AFRC Recruiting Service at Robins AFB, Georgia.)