CINCINNATI – What began as a simple prospecting call ended with U-Haul aiding a Cincinnati Bengals food drive and attaining valuable promotion for U-Box® containers at an NFL game.
Eleven U-Box containers were strategically placed outside Paul Brown Stadium on Nov. 6 for a Thursday Night Football contest between the Cleveland Browns and host Bengals. A crowd of 65,871 attended the game, which was broadcast on NFL Network.
U-Box containers served as collection points for the 28th annual Meijer Canned Food Drive put on by the Bengals and Freestore Foodbank. Fans filled the U-Box containers, which had cardboard boxes stationed on wood pallets for easy drop-off and unloading. Contributions totaled 6,294 pounds of food and $17,356.03 in cash.
U-Haul delivered the U-Box containers to the food bank after the game. The food drive enabled Freestore Foodbank to hand out 57,000 more meals to hungry families in the Cincinnati area this holiday season.
The Bengals thanked U-Haul for its support and the U-Box containers on its team Web site in a Nov. 12 press release. More importantly, a foundation is in place for U-Haul to have the same voluntary presence at the Bengals food drive in upcoming NFL seasons.
U-Haul Company of Southwest Ohio is to be commended for its efforts, beginning with Marketing Company President Drew Case and Area Field Manager Steve Allen. U-Box Customer Care Representative Tina Bomar worked diligently to make sure the 11 U-Box containers were in place on game day, as well as a U-Haul® trailer for display purposes.
“I drove them around to each location they’d like to have them placed, and then hauled them over to Freestore after the game,” Bomar said. “It took a couple of trips but I thought it was really neat thing for us to do to help a lot of families. It was cold, windy and rainy that night. But believe you me, there was no way you could miss (the U-Box containers).”
This opportunity evolved from Case and Allen contacting a storage owner who had ended his portable storage business. The positive impression they left prompted him to tell them about his role in the Bengals food drive. He offered U-Haul the chance to take his place.
Case made contact with the head of advertising for the Bengals, and she gladly accepted the donation of U-Box containers to the cause.
“Many teams use barrels to collect items, and water can get in there and everything else,” Case said. “These (U-Box containers) are more noticeable and so much more convenient for everybody. And it helped our objective, which along with doing something nice, is to get the word out about U-Box.
“It might be of interest to reach out to local sports teams’ advertising personnel to see if there are opportunities to help out with a drive and get the word out about U-Box. It looks good either way.”
In case you were wondering, the Browns won the game 24-3.
But the real winners were the generous fans who donated and U-Haul for helping its local community by putting its U-Box containers to good use.
Did you use U-Box containers or U-Haul trucks to help your community? Tell us in the comments below!