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Pop up Skittle store lets you pawn unwanted gifts for sweets

I’m sure that the majority of people have received a Christmas present and thought secretly ‘that’s going straight to the charity shop’. It’s become such a social phenomenon Harvey Nicholls even created a Christmas advert that honed in on people’s facial expressions when receiving an unwanted gift.

So it’s no surprise that a brand has created a PR campaign around unwanted Christmas presents.

Wrigley-owned sweet brand Skittles opened a pop-up store in Toronto, Canada from the 26th till the 30th December 2015, allowing visitors to swap unloved Christmas gifts for the sweets.

The ‘Skittles Holiday Pawn Shop’ was situated on Queen Street West and was fronted by a comedy character called Dale the Dealmaker.

The public were encouraged to bring in any gifts that they fancied pawning for Skittles, even those that were not a Christmas present. The store particularly encouraged the swapping of novelty gifts such as Grandma-knitted sweaters and stuffed animals, however branded merchandise, food, drugs, weapons and pictures of your private parts were not accepted – seems reasonable no?

You may be wandering what is Dale’s role in this. Visitors of the pop up store were encouraged to barter with Dale to agree upon how many bags of Skittles their item was worth, ah now you can see the fun side.

Like with the majority of PR stunts, charity is always mixed in to make it more credible to the media/public. All items received by the brand were donated to the Goodwill ReUse centre in Toronto’s Scarborough district.

For those not in the area over the festive season, Skittles launched a digital campaign to accompany the activation. Fans of the brand could head to a dedicated microsite to see how much their unwanted items were worth in Skittles, but never actually received any sweets. Life isn’t fair *sigh*.

(Sourced from Event magazine)

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Lydia Bryant works as a Junior Account Manager at Rich Leigh and Co and is a marketing graduate.