Old Navy Heads Back To School With Kristen Bell

As parents dive into the madness of back-to-school shopping, Old Navy is hoping to make it a little more fun, teaming up with the ever-wacky Kristin Bell for a new campaign supporting its charitable efforts for kids.

The new sweepstakes offers the chance to win a $1,000 shopping spree at Old Navy, as well as a little in-person singalong session with Bell, who needs help polishing her own back-to-school anthem. The effort benefits ONward, Old Navy’s cause-related platform, which supports the Boys & Girls Club. Fans can enter by contributing $10 through Omaze, the online fundraising platform.

Bell is launching the effort with a series of videos that feature her singing a song stitched together from interviews with kids at from Boys & Girls Club programs.



The Bell videos are running in conjunction with other back-to-school ads. And the retailer is also selling a special-edition of ONward-themed gear, including “Our Generation Will Change the World” tees, hoodies, totes and water bottles. Old Navy, owned by The Gap, says it intends to give $50,000 to Boys & Girls Clubs in honor of the collection, combined with a $1 million in-store fundraising effort, matching customer donations up to $300,000. And those who donate $5 or more while shopping get both an entry voucher for the Bell campaign, as well as $5 off a future purchase.

The back-to-school season typically offers marketers a special window into cause-related campaigns. Kohl’s uses it as a springboard into literacy efforts, for example, while stores like Staples, Target and Burlington engage shoppers in helping teachers prepare for a better school year. 

But even niche brands get involved: Tom’s of Maine, for example, is donating 10,000 "Backpacks Full of Good" to kids around the country this year, and is inviting people to send an encouraging “Good Luck” note that it will tuck inside each pack.

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