The US Army has a yearly recruitment target of 80000. Being an all-volunteer organisation and sending the recruited into life-threatening situations, the messaging for these recruitment drives needs to be of special relevance to entice the American youth to sign up.
AdAge reports on the US Army's recently opened Army Experience Centre in a Philadelphia shopping mall- complete with Humvee and helicopter simulators. The Centre's objective is to provide a rich geared to show young people today what the U.S. Army is like in a very rich, immersive, educational and factual environment for the youth, while at the same time, providing some form of entertainment.
They have also tapped into the strength of online gaming with the popular "America's Army" online game, which today has more than 9 million registered users. The US Army is further set for an updated version of the game due for release in 2009.
Military fashion will also shortly become available at retailers Sears Roebuck & Co. in October this year. The First Infantry Division apparel collection will feature Army-licensed insignias and will be manufactured for a wide range of ages, including sizes for boys.
These initiatives seem to be working. The US Army has beaten its recruitment target for three years in a row. With these latest initiatives, the US Army brand would surely be further entrenched in the youths' minds.