The exclusive merch, a Snoopy T-shirt, made in partnership with the Peanuts brand, features the beloved cartoon dog’s alter-ego 'Joe Cool' on the front.
The American Red Cross and Peanuts are joining forces to remind our friends like you that it’s cool to be kind and help save lives. The American Red Cross is always trying new ways to increase blood donation, and a marketing approach is not just driving up first-time donors but also tapping into childhood nostalgia. The exclusive merch, a Snoopy T-shirt, made in partnership with the Peanuts brand, features the beloved cartoon dog’s alter-ego “Joe Cool” on the front. “Be Cool. Give Blood,” the slogan says as Snoopy leans against the American Red Cross symbol. According to NBC, the shirt is going viral on TikTok, and first-time blood donors are lining up to get their hands on the exclusive merch in exchange for some blood.
The collaboration has witnessed an increase in blood donations and has found an audience on TikTok, with users documenting their visit and the new shirt. Though it is not a hot deal, but the cute retro t-shirt is being handed out for free to anyone who donates blood between April 1 to 23. Many TikTok users have started showing off their free merch, which has become a user-generated marketing campaign because of its popularity. “The American Red Cross really popped off with this one,” shared TikTok user @fourr_eyess while modeling the free tee she got from donating, reports In The Know. The commenters were loving this new collab and even shared ingenious new strategies. "Imagine if they did a collab with big artists like Taylor Swift, they wouldn’t need to worry about blood for a while," said @mollie.o. "Snoopy single-handedly fixing the blood shortage," added @julipritchett.
It's cool to help others. 🕶— American Red Cross (@RedCross) April 6, 2023
Make an appointment to come give blood or platelets April 1-23 and you could rock this Red Cross + PEANUTS® (@Snoopy) exclusive T-shirt, while they last. Learn more: https://t.co/zQ39pOW26I pic.twitter.com/392GAOlYD4
Moreover, TikTok users are saying the promise of a Snoopy shirt has made them get over their fear of needles, while some have fainted in their quest to get a Snoopy tee. It is clear that the partnership has already won the hearts of the masses, but it sure will be interesting to see the total number of donations at the end of the campaign. Darren Irby, the executive director of national brand partnerships at the Red Cross, said it’s been fascinating to see this collaboration’s popularity on social media. “It’s been great to see so many young folks so fired up by this particular partnership and realizing that maybe their fear of needles or other concerns aren’t as bad as what they thought they might be,” he said.
Being a friend & taking care of others never go out of style. Give blood or platelets with the Red Cross & help patients in need. Then get an EXCLUSIVE Red Cross + PEANUTS® #Snoopy T-shirt when you come give April 1-23, while they last. Sign up to give: https://t.co/5hNP56JXag pic.twitter.com/8CyY12X0pb— Red Cross Philadelphia (@RedCrossPhilly) April 10, 2023
Irby said the success could already be seen in their data. “We’ve seen web traffic to our appointment page — since Monday, it is up 50% versus our six-month running averages,” he explained. “What’s cool and speaks to the social aspect of this is that organic search is up 600% over the last couple of days.” The Red Cross has offered tie-in merchandise at previous blood drives. As reported by The New York Times, the nonprofit organization teamed up with HBO for “Bleed for the Throne,” a campaign that offered T-shirts commemorating the final season of “Game of Thrones” and a chance to win a replica throne in 2019. Irby said young people are often introduced to blood donations in high schools, but the pandemic made drives less and less accessible, but social media has helped bridge some of that gap.
“The strategy is to introduce blood donation into fan bases to inspire new donors through the lens of their existing interests and their passion points,” he noted. Irby says that Peanuts fans have significantly helped with the collaboration's reach. “Several years ago, we made the conscious decision to inspire new donors through the lens of their existing interests and their passion points,” he said. “We do this a few times a year, and it’s made a difference. So, we strategically reached out to Peanuts because we loved the cross-generational appeal that it offered.”