Day 3 - 2 July 2013
Today began with a reflection by Cambodia on the topic of ‘Belong’. They taught us about the way geese behave in flight to help each other to fly more efficiently and encourage those who are in need of help.
Our first session was a presentation by Barbara Hill of Girl Scouts of the USA (GSUSA) on the subject of marketing. GSUSA have been undergoing a transformation over the previous 10 years in terms of their program, their volunteer structure, their council structure and their image. They have developed a strong focus - to “build girls of courage, confidence, and character, who make the world a better place”.
Barbara spoke about how GSUSA has raised public awareness of Girl Scouting through the promotion of the ToGetHerThere project which aims to provide opportunities for all girls in the USA, and shared some examples of the marketing strategies used to attract widespread media attention.
The rest of the day was spent participating in Learning Excursions. Four different organisations – two companies, a government office and school – were selected because the strategies they use to strengthen their brand name can provide Girl Guides and Girl Scouts with ideas to strength our brand.
One group visited Kokuyo, which is a well-known Japanese company producing and selling stationary and office supplies and office furniture. Kokuyo is held in high regard for its policy of only making products that is environment friendly. The company has introduced "Eco Live Office" offices with a reduced burden on the environment, enhanced the motivation of its employees and strengthened its brand name. We can draw inspiration from Kokuyo’s emphasis on individuals, humanity and flexibility to improve our member organisations.
The second group visited Shinagawa High School for Girls, which has a project called the “28 Project”. It aims to educate girls in a way that the girls will become active and contributing members of society by age 28. The participants got to interact with the Principal of the school who was enthusiastically explained the school’s aims. They also learned how the positive attitude of this organisation has made it a successful example of ‘rebranding’.
Shiseido, one of the Japan’s leading cosmetics manufacturers, was the destination for the third group. Shiseido places emphasis on Corporate Social Responsibility and devotes a lot of effort to recycling its cosmetics packaging and various other environmental conversation activities. The participants learned about having a key message for your brand and promoting it through various means.
The fourth group visited the Japanese Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry, which established the Cool Japan Office to formulate and promote policies to promote the overseas advancement of Japanese cultural and creative industries. It was an example of the public and private sectors working together. The Cool Japan Office taught us about the importance of research and making your branding and marketing applicable to your target audience.
After the excursion, each group discussed and shared their ideas to strengthen the Girl Guide and Girl Scout brand and inspire motivation in members.
The day concluded with a “Be Bee” party, organised by the “Worker Bees” who are the AMAZING group of volunteers from Girl Scouts of Japan assisting with all aspects of the conference.
Miranda Cummings (Australia), Shinetsetseg Lkhagvasuren (Mongolia), Chhavi Goyal (India), Ada Kwan (Hong Kong)