Mobile Commerce Daily is now Retail Dive: Mobile Commerce! Click here to learn more!

Duracell and Postmates deliver one of the most overlooked holiday items

Battery manufacturer Duracell, unwilling to be ignored this holiday season, teamed up with Postmates on Christmas Eve to provide an on-demand battery delivery service called the Duracell Express.

In celebration of the season of giving, families across Chicago, Milwaukee and Minneapolis were able to request a visit from the magical Duracell Express, which would deliver Duracell products to their front doors. The promotion provided some good publicity for the two companies—one of which offers an unsexy product, the other a promising concept that has been the subject of bad publicity over the past few years for exorbitant pricing and shoddy customer service.

“Chicago, Milwaukee and Minneapolis have a lot of households with small children,” said Alfonso Arteaga, brand manager at Duracell. “In addition, these three cities tend to have extreme weather during the winter months.

“We offered our Duracell Express services in these areas where winter storms may actually prevent parents from safely leaving their home to pickup the batteries they forgot on Christmas Eve.”

Duracell Express
The promotion also involved former Chicago Cub and David Ross, who delivered Duracell batteries to Toys for Tots Chicago on Christmas Eve. The batteries accompanied toys distributed to economically disadvantaged children in the area.

The nature of the partnership was based on Duracell’s findings that every Christmas Eve, thousands of families forget to buy batteries for the presents they buy their children.

The campaign chronicling the Duracell Express’s Christmas Eve was also promoted through a video produced by major advertising firm Wieden + Kennedy.

The campaign was a great piece of publicity in service to a great cause, in addition to doing work to strengthen the long-standing partnership between Toys for Tots and Duracell, which donates one million batteries to the organization each year.

Postmates, however, has not achieved the Uber-level of market penetration that the Silicon Valley-based startup was hoping when it opened up shop in 2011. Part of the reason for its stunted growth is being marred by a significant amount of media criticism, both over its price structure and the reliability of the app.

Despite not experiencing the boom its competitors Uber and Amazon enjoyed near the beginning of their genesis, the company is still heading towards profitability towards 2017, according to CEO Bastian Lehmann.

With this in mind, the Duracell Express provided some much-needed good publicity for the company, even if the effort was self-generated.

Postmates was the first delivery option McDonald’s turned to with a test-run at 88 locations in New York, before eventually partnering on a larger scale with competitor UberEATS (see story).

And last year, Chipotle partnered with the delivery company (see story).

“We are always working to grow and engage our social communities, and have found that a majority of people are interacting with our channels through mobile devices,” Mr. Arteaga said. “We want to ensure that we are accessible to audiences however they prefer to reach us.”