Genoa High School graduate Brittany Darling may be an up-and-coming college basketball star, but she’s also Generation Y, or part of the MySpace generation. At least, one local ice cream restaurant chain believes so.
The Cold Stone Creamery at Crossroads Parkway in Rossford has chosen Darling to represent the store in the nationwide iMix America contest.
Known as Generation Y, or the MySpace generation, young adults, such as Darling, in this group between the ages of 15- and 24-years-old spend 242 minutes on average per month on MySpace alone. The ice cream chain is increasing efforts to market to that generation.
Darling was invited to the Rossford store to concoct her own signature Creation Rockin Reese’s Cookie Dough. She was selected based upon her answers in an application questionnaire, evaluating the contestant’s ability to market their Creation.
Next, Darling will self-promote the Creation within their social network during each round of the competition. Based on the number of votes their signature Creation receives, contestants will progress through the three competitive field-reducing brackets over five months ending Dec. 31.
Students, friends, family of Brittany, and anyone who wants to try a new locally-made ice cream Creation can vote for Darling’s concoction. Ice cream lovers are needed throughout the contest to vote for their favorite Creation on the contest’s Web site using a unique code provided to them at the time of purchase. Voting for contestant Creations began on August 6.
If Darling wins, she will receive a prize package worth $30,000 including automotive, travel, electronics, and cellular products and services, which will be awarded in January 2009.
Darling's is best known for her talents playing basketball for Genoa girls coach Tom Kontak. She become a three-time first-team District 7 Coaches Association selection, a three-time first-team All-Suburban Lakes League selection, played in the Ohio-Indiana All-Star Game last April in Fort Wayne, and now plans to play for Coach Mike Llanas at Owens Community College this winter.
She said she chose to play for the Express because “it's close to home, so I can go home whenever I want.”
Darling averaged 18.8 points and 11.7 rebounds a game for the Comets, who won the SLL title this year. For her career, she averaged 16.3 points and 10.8 rebounds.
Darling finished with 1,452 career points, the second-highest total in school history. She holds school records in career rebounding (962), field goals made (618) and career blocked shots (236). She is tied for the school single-season mark for rebounds, with 268.
“I appreciated all that Brittany has done for Genoa basketball and Genoa High School,” Kontak said. “Her performance over her career has really put Genoa on the map.”
Cold Stone says the reason for the contest is that it is hoping to reach a typically difficult demographic of ice cream lovers not easily reached through traditional advertising.
By creating a contest that is promoted through social networking sites, Cold Stone Creamery says it has has the potential to tap into this tech-savvy generation that makes up a large portion of the brand’s customer and crew member population.
Cold Stone Creamery officials say they deliver The Ultimate Ice Cream Experience “through a community of franchisees who are passionate about ice cream.” The secret recipe for smooth and creamy ice cream is handcrafted fresh daily in each store, and then customized by combining a variety of mix-ins on a frozen granite stone.
Headquartered in Scottsdale, Ariz., Cold Stone Creamery is part of the Kahala holding company, a leading brand-building franchisor with a portfolio of 12 quick service restaurant brands. Cold Stone Creamery alone operates nearly 1,400 locations in the U.S., Puerto Rico, Guam, Japan, Korea, China, Taiwan, Indonesia, Mexico, Denmark and United Arab Emirates.