8 Back-to-school Campaign Ideas for You to Try This Fall

Picture of Kalev Kärpuk
Kalev Kärpuk
School campaign ideas

Unlike some shopping frenzies, such as the holidays or Black Friday, one goes with a bit less hype but is significant – back-to-school shopping.

Any parent will tell you how light their wallets feel every late summer after a splurge and chaos to get the latest and the greatest for their kids. Back-to-school spending was expected to reach a new record of up to $34.4 billion in 2022.

Therefore, it’s your job to make your business stand out during back-to-school shopping sprees. This article will help you precisely with that.

We will go super actionable and give 8 back-to-school campaign ideas for you to try this fall and show you how to use Adact to create those campaigns without investing hours and hours of your precious time. We will also give you many practical tips and email examples to show you how to make this year’s back-to-school campaign a massive win.

8 Back-to-school campaign ideas to promote your business

Our eight examples will give you ideas on how to gamify your back-to-school campaign, reach kids on social media and even promote your brand in the physical world by giving out gifts.

1. Interactive back-to-school games

With or without your campaign—the kids are talking about school in this period, and all of the activities that accompany it. That’s why the best idea is to join this bandwagon and play a part in what they are already doing:

Personality tests

Personality school test

There’s a good reason why YouTubers have been doing “types of kids at school” videos for more than a decade—each generation watches them over and over again. That means personality tests are an evergreen way to attract school kids and students to your brand.

What’s more, this type of test is suitable for all generations. You can ask younger kids about upcoming math tests and essays, while questions about favorite parties and trips with friends are better suited for a bit older high-schoolers or even college students.

Related: How to make a personality quiz


Trivia game

Another cool game for school kids is the classic trivia. Answering short questions is a fun pass time when getting ready for the first day of the school year. It’s also a perfect place to include your brand elements. 

Related: Best trivia game maker and How to make a trivia game

School subject battles

School subject battle

Comparing two items is a good option for customer surveys, but it can also be used as a fun game for school kids. It’s not hard to guess that the least favorite subject is likely to be maths. 😅

Blitz-test kids’ knowledge swipe polls

Knowledge swipe poll

Swipe polls are a perfect option for mobile phones and are also great for school quizzes. They are easy to play and will let you quickly ask kids simple questions intertwined with brand elements.

Related: Gamification Marketing for Christmas Campaigns

2. Social media contest

Back to school photo contest
Image source: abccolumbia

Whether parents like it or not, kids of all ages spend their time on social media. Not even the parents themselves will have anything against their kids earning prizes and testing their knowledge in fun quizzes. For that reason, creating a fun, school-oriented social media campaign makes sense. 

Related: September marketing ideas

3. Back-to-school survival guide

If you want to take your creativity to the next level and create something more unique, you can offer kids a back-to-school survival guide. Try to incorporate practical tips with funny stuff to keep their attention, like:

  • Get to bed on time a few days before: this will help you wake up on time on the first school day, making the rise and shine process a bit more bearable (but not enough! 😨)
  • Stay positive: even though the summer fun is over and piles of homework are about to clog your table, you have been here before and survived! Plus, school involves plenty of fun activities, such as hanging out with friends and complaining about school. ✅
  • Organize your first week: take a moment to think about your first week – yes, you will go to school, but what will you do besides that? Plan something fun after school, include sports, go see a movie. All those things will keep you busy, and you will spend quality time developing a nice routine, making it easier to continue being social once the homework comes. ⚡

4. Special back-to-school bundles

Back to school bundles
Image source: Walmart

If you offer school supplies, or any products/services related to kids or school, then making back-to-school shopping bundles and offering discounts is a no-brainer. This is a once-in-a-year opportunity when parents have money for school spending and will be glad to buy things in bundles.

Of course, this can be tied to anything related to children, even if it has nothing to do with school—clothes, food, toys or sports gear. But, it can even be tied to travel, as parents will maybe want to organize a last-ditch late summer vacation.

You can still offer discounts if your business has nothing to do with kids or school! For example, even if you sell bathroom tiles, you can say you know how painful back-to-school season is for parents’ wallets. That’s why you want to contribute by offering them a discount if their bathroom needs an emergency repair in the middle of school preparation.

Related: Mother’s Day Campaign Ideas

5. Influencer marketing

Influencer school campaign ideas
Image source: mrslukeslab

Influencer marketing works with any user group, and kids are no different. However, double-check the background and the post-activity of influencers you choose, as well as the type of back-to-school campaigns you plan to run. Children are a sensitive consumer group, and things can easily backfire if you make a wrong move or if your back-to-school marketing campaign is too salesy and aggressive. 

6. Cause marketing

Cause school marketing
Image source: The Simple Folk

Cause school marketing is not just a great way to promote your brand, it is a noble thing to do. The back-to-school season is an excellent place to engage with children, as they won’t have too many obligations when the school year begins and will still be in a good mood.

If you don’t want to get engaged or don’t have ideas, you can let kids choose. For example, you can get in touch with a local school and tell them that you want to match any amount of donations kids collect during the first school week by organizing a charity shop. Suggest using that money to buy toys or medication for a local children’s hospital.

Related: Father’s Day Campaign Ideas

7. Bonuses

We have mentioned that even if you don’t sell anything children/school-related, there are still plenty of ways you can join the back-to-school campaign craze. Besides offering discounts and coupons, here are some other school marketing campaigns that will show that you indeed understand the situation:

  • Loyalty bonuses: regardless of the products you sell, you can offer members of your loyalty clubs discounts to relieve some pressure on their wallets.
  • Grades bonuses: to reward good students, you can offer additional bonuses based on their grades. The better the average, the lower the price!
  • Teacher discounts: students and their parents are not the only ones getting ready for school – what about teachers?! This often neglected consumer group will welcome any discount you can give them, as they also refresh their wardrobes and equipment during the back-to-school season.
  • Checkout gifts: regardless of your core business, you can give school-related checkout gifts to contribute to the upcoming school year symbolically. Things like kids’ table calendars are always handy and great places to put your brand elements on.

8. School campaign ideas for your email

Whether you decide to use a gamification campaign, social media marketing or give physical gifts or coupons, emails should always be an integral part of your school marketing efforts. Here are some excellent back-to-school email campaign ideas you can borrow from popular brands:


Email school campaign ideas
Image source: Really Good Emails

Here’s an example of how even brands that don’t directly sell school supplies and kids-related products can still participate and offer back-to-school discounts.

Munk Pack

School campaign ideas for email
Image source: Really Good Emails

Organizing giveaways is another great way to draw attention, especially if the products you sell are something kids consume like it is the case with Munk Pack and this giveaway.


Back to school email
Image source: Really Good Emails

Atoms gave us a simple yet brilliant example of how not only students are important, but teachers too, by explicitly mentioning them in their campaign and offering discounts. 

For more inspiration, check out our post on email lead-generation techniques.


Back-to-school sales are an excellent opportunity to earn more, increase brand awareness and attract customers. If done right, you will attract children to your brand early, which can turn them into lifelong customers if you continue to bring value in the years to come.

Adact can help you make an impact by quickly setting up a gamification campaign. Sign up today, completely free, and set up this year’s back-to-school campaign on time! These are useful not only for back-to-school promotions but for any other type of sales or promotional activities you have throughout the year.

School campaign ideas: FAQs

How do you make a good school campaign?

There are no one-size-fits-all solutions, and a perfect campaign to engage customers will be dependent on your brand and any school products you sell, but, in general:
1. Focus your marketing campaign on students, but also parents and teachers.
2. Don’t be too pushy, especially when the target audience of your campaign are kids.
3. Use humor and games, and approach kids in a fun way.
4. Use digital channels the target audience spends time on – TikTok is a good option for children-oriented marketing; LinkedIn would be a better choice for targeting parents and teachers.

What do you give out for school campaigns?

Some of the things you can gift in your school campaigns are:
– Discounts and coupons
– BOGO (buy one get one)
– Free shipping
– Customer loyalty discounts and small gifts
– Checkout gifts (calendars, pens, markers)

How can I attract more students with my campaign?

The best way to attract students and school children is by organizing giveaways, providing coupons and discounts, and gamifying the whole experience. Adact can help you with exactly that, ensuring you make an impact with branded gamification campaigns.

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