Oakland Zoo has been an institution of Oakland’s community since 1922, with a rich history and tradition as part of Oakland’s fabric. Kids have grown up and taken their kids to the zoo. Some might say that zoo means as much to the community as the Tribune building in Downtown Oakland.
The zoo has gone through many developments, raising money to develop different exhibits, such as the African Veldt exhibit (1965), the Australian Outback (1975) and the original tiger exhibit (1980). Today, the zoo is home to over 660 native and exotic animals and is nationally known for its excellent elephant exhibit.
As with any thriving nonprofit organization, the zoo has been looking for creative ways to preserve cash. They partnered with BizX in 2011. Since then, the zoo has been able to offset budgeted cash expenses by using BizX on different cash expenses. These have included employee perks and other incentives for which they would otherwise pay cash. In turn, BizX has purchased zoo guest passes and parking passes, which BizX members can purchase from the BizX Marketplace. The zoo has been able to see savings in their annual business operations while acquiring new visitors who might normally not have a “zoo day” on their mind.
So, another BizX member finding savings in their membership, right? The story gets better.
Last year, the zoo was trying to figure out ways to promote their annual Zoo Lights celebration, an event with hundreds of thousands of sparking lights illuminating the night sky, creating a twinkling tradition known to be the largest LED holiday light display in the Bay Area.
“It’s such a wonderful event, and we wanted to make sure that everybody in the Bay Area knew about it,” Nicky Mora, Senior Manager, Marketing/PR at the zoo, said. “We also knew that with BizX, there were a lot of media options that we could utilize to get the message out.”
The zoo established a budget earmarked for advertising this event and met with BizX to talk about the most effective ways to get the word out. The discussion covered options ranging from outdoor billboards along crowded highways and intersections to coffee sleeve advertising to colorful print ads in local magazines and newspapers. Ultimately, the zoo decided that the best way to reach their audience was through a radio campaign on CBS.
“It turned out great,” Mora said.
“We were able to use the BizX dollars built up through selling our extra guest passes on the BizX marketplace to run a radio campaign promoting this important event for the zoo. We were able to secure competitive pricing, and didn’t have to pay cash.”
The zoo was able to target the audience they wanted, ensuring that future generations will be able to experience this Oakland institution for years to come.
“We’ll be doing the radio campaign again this year it was so successful,” Mora said. The Oakland Zoo loves the ability to advertise using BizX.