Campus Move-In: The Perfect Time to Reach Students and Parents

By BNC Marketing


You may think college move-in means an endless flow of boxes, crates and a heap of personal belongings that college students simply can’t live without. The flurry of activity is fast and hectic as families arrive on campus to move their college kids into their new, temporary residences.


What you may not realize is that amid all the hustle and bustle, there are great opportunities to engage with students and their parents at this very moment. Brands that connect with students when they arrive on-campus will make a lasting impression with this high-value group of potential life-long loyal consumers.


Move-In: A Monumental Milestone Along the College Journey

Although they’ve been planning and looking forward to it, until students arrive on campus, they don’t entirely know what to expect. This holds true not only for freshmen, but for upperclassmen and transfer students as well. The unknown brings stress  mixed with excitement. New roommates, living quarters and academic challenges await them on campus.

At this important time, students seek out novel experiences and products and are especially receptive to new brands, messages and promotions. Because parents want to make sure their children are settled into campus life —  along with everything else they need for a successful school year — they will consider all information and offers presented to them.


Marketers, Think About Making a Big Impact In-Store

Welcome/Back-to-Campus discounts, special offers and samples spark interest and trial. Students will visit the bookstore to pick up textbooks and last-minute dorm and snack items — and parents will be there with credit card in-hand. Your message on signage, kiosks or digital TV will carry extra weight at this time. Samples and in-store promos will make your brand stand out and come alive — and presents a great opportunity for your brand reps to engage with students and parents.


Go All Out and Stage an On-Campus Event

Move-in can be exhausting and students and parents need to take frequent breaks throughout the day. Plus, there’s plenty of down-time as families wait for their appointed move-in time slot. You may want to consider:

  • Hosting a beverage or snack station while reps demo your product and speak with students and parents.
  • Distributing samples and product collateral in the dorm area and near store.
  • Providing music, massages or other welcome services to attract attention and place your brand top-of-mind.
  • Running a sweepstakes or special promotion to capture names for your lead database.


Ready to “move-in” your brand at back-to-school this fall? Barnes & Noble College can introduce your brand to students as they arrive back on campus. Contact Lori Cohn directly at, and she’ll show you how.

Can’t get on campus this fall? Ask us about the many ways to reach students and parents via email, social and digital advertising.

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