Philly agency organizes big hunt for tiny turtles at U. of Maryland

Posted on Mon Oct 5 2009

Turtle

What better way to boost school spirit than to have students search for the university's mascot? Or rather, 569 miniature ceramic versions of the mascot? That's what the University of Maryland did when it tapped Philadelphia ad agency Red Tettemer to create its latest campaign. Playing off the college's tagline, "Fear the turtle," the shop developed an indoor, outdoor and alternate reality game that had students hunting for the hidden turtles all over campus. The goal was to "find and fear the turtle," which is a symbol of inner strength and curiosity, university officials said. So far, 350 turtles have been found, with the lucky winners receiving prizes like Starbucks and Applebee's gift cards and iPods. (The turtles, when pieced together on the game's Web site, form a map with further clues, with each segment of the puzzle appearing as contestants redeem their codes.) The university's student paper, Diamond Back Online, also recently ran a piece to help get the word out. It's an interesting idea, though as that article points out, there's been a big WTF reaction among many baffled students.

—Posted by Elaine Wong


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