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L.L. Bean Bootmobile is coming to town

L.L. Bean is hitting the road and bringing its latest campaign to college campuses around the country, including a stop at Ohio State on Monday and Tuesday.

The national “Be an Outsider” campaign works to encourage students to share their love of nature through on-site shopping, skill classes, giveaways and more.

“We really feel like the outdoors are ingrained in L.L. Bean,” said Eddie Flaherty, experiential marketing planner at L.L. Bean. “When we were founded in 1912, our founder Leon Leonwood felt like the outdoors was a critical component to enjoying life. We’ve kind of revamped that thought with our ‘Be an Outsider’ campaign and really emphasize to vocalize that and to bring it to places like Ohio State where we feel like there are L.L. Bean outsiders all over the campus.”

This year, the outdoor and sporting apparel retailer will give students a chance to buy pieces from its fall 2017 collection, which will be displayed in a 24-foot tall bean boot mobile trailer on the west plaza of the Ohio Union.

L.L. Bean is hitting the road and bringing its latest campaign to college campuses around the country, including a stop at Ohio State between Oct. 30 and 31. Credit: Courtesy of L.L. Bean

After adding the shopping experience, Flaherty said the retailer decided to extend the event to two days to get as many students involved as possible.

In past years, the company has regularly offered prizes and activities at the event, but this year will be the first time L.L. Bean offers an exclusive shopping experience for students on campus, including a bean boot lace bar, where students can customize the colors of their laces.

“It’s really based around the fact that we want folks to get outside,” Flaherty said. “While we’ve always had games, giveaways and prizes, I feel like the best way to do that is to give them the apparel and the equipment that they need to head outside.

The brand will also be bringing its “Outdoor Discovery School” to campus, which will offer 30-minute crash courses in basic orienteering through a map and compass activity.

Flaherty said the goal of the activity is to help students avoid using technologies like their iPhones when they’re outside. Students who participate in the activity will also be entered to win a weekend trip to Maine, where the L.L. Bean headquarters is located.  

So far, the L.L. Bean Bootmobile has hit eight colleges across the country, including the University of Cincinnati and the University of Pittsburgh. The company will wrap up its tour with its visit to Ohio State.

Our team is excited for the journey to Columbus for the final stop of our Be an Outsider Tour,” Ben Sandy, experiential marketing specialist for L.L. Bean, said in an email. “Even though Ohio State is nearly a thousand miles from Maine, buckeye nation has always made us feel right at home.”

The L.L. Bean Bootmobile will be at the Ohio Union from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Monday and Tuesday.

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