Northwest Wholesale’s Free Pool Giveaway

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In March 2011, the owner of North West Wholesale, a pool and hot-tub company in Winnipeg, Manitoba, made a bet with Mother Nature. He struck a deal that if temperatures exceeded 34.5°C on July 18th, customers who purchased a pool, hot tub, or water heater between March 1 and July 4, 2011 would be eligible for a full rebate.

When he randomly chose July 18th as the date to place his bet on, customers didn’t realize that day would fall in the middle of a heat wave that saw temperatures soaring to the mid-30s across Canada. In a season that started with rain and flood in Manitoba, owner Nelson Barrett couldn’t be more pleased with the buzz created from this weather wager.

The Free Pool Giveaway made headlines in local and national news, spurring articles in the Winnipeg Free Press, Winnipeg Sun, and CBC National Radio.

The buzz was generated not only by pool purchasers and media but by the general public who were rooting for people to win a free pool. It created a positive news story that attracted lots of attention. The temperature peaked at 33°C on July 18th but that certainly did not dampen the spirits of those close to the promotion. For North West Wholesale, a season of rain and flood had the potential to ruin sales for the year. “This has gone beyond what we expected,” said Barrett. “We spent a little bit of money on this, but compared to what it would cost to run a whole bunch of ads — I think we got way more out of it.”

The free pool offer was backed by a contingent weather policy by IC Specialty Brokers.  It was designed by looking at the historical weather data for the region, and identifying the likelihood of an occurrence of that level. Based on the odds of the condition happening, the insurance policy was issued to eliminate any financial risk. If Mother Nature hit the mark on July 18th, the insurance policy would cover the cost of rebate payouts to North West Wholesale’s customers.

The weather affects how consumers purchase and how retailers and manufacturers market their seasonal products and services. Designing a promotional offer that is contingent on the weather creates a unique twist to a marketing program that can attract consumers and increase seasonal product sales.

Who does this type of policy benefit?

  • Retailers with seasonal product that can be heavily affected by weather, such as air conditioners, beverages, sporting goods, and vacation services.
  • Retailers looking for a fresh marketing campaign that can generate buzz for a fraction of the cost.

Learn more about how you can use a weather promotion to your advance by speaking to a IC Specialty Brokers’ expert today.

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