A simple, five-question online personality quiz engages consumers while promoting Hollywood Hibiscus plants.

Which Hollywood Hibiscus are you? A stylish and confident Bombshell, perhaps? Or maybe you’re a Jolly Polly — cheerful, enthusiastic and ready to brighten someone’s day with your infectious charm.

These questions are part of the Hollywood Hibiscus Quiz, brainchild of J. Berry Nursery and horticulture marketing firm Upshoot. Launched in early January following its promotion at the Mid-Atlantic Nursery Trade Show (MANTS) and the Tropical Plant International Expo (TPIE), the breezy questionnaire tells participants which of six Hollywood Hibiscus varieties best matches their personality.

In the quiz, consumers answer five multiple-choice questions, providing their favorite color and their idea of a fun night. Responses are passed through an algorithm that calculates the most likely match, with a colorful final graphic describing how the flower aligns with a tester’s personality. The Bombshell, for instance, is “a big, bold, beautiful presence in the garden, turning heads wherever she’s planted.”

Tamara Felux, a marketing and licensing manager at J. Berry Nursery, calls the quiz a hip, interactive tool that provides a unique means of connecting with customers. After taking the quiz on the Hollywood Hibiscus website, users can directly share the outcome on Facebook or Twitter, spreading the fun to an even wider audience.

“We wanted to develop more background and depth in the personality of our plants,” says Felux. “Our customers are able to find the personality or character that suits them best.”

In creating the questionnaire, Felux and Upshoot storyboarded hibiscus “personalities” based on attributes of famous Hollywood archetypes.

“It’s a basic personality quiz, but at the end you find out which flower you are,” says Katie Elzer-Peters, a copywriter at Upshoot who worked on the project alongside Felux and Upshoot president Maria Zampini.

Users must enter an email address to see their results, effectively building a list of potential J. Berry Nursery customers interested in Hollywood Hibiscus. Participants can also download a care sheet of hibiscus how-tos when they’re ready to take their flowers home.

“Both the care sheet and quiz drive traffic to our website,” Felux says. “Via the opt-in email address required for both, we’re able to stay in touch with a focused audience.”

Independent garden centers, meanwhile, can use the quiz as a model for their own marketing programs, notes Zampini. Want to build a personality questionnaire around houseplants? Simply ask consumers some relatable questions, like whether they’re happier in the sun or shade.

“It would set (IGCs) apart, because not a lot of places are doing this,” Zampini says. “It’s going to help build their list of consumers and keep people excited.”

More than 600 visitors took the quiz in the first month of its release. Felux and the Upshoot team expect thousands of additional participants to engage with the quiz’s vibrant cast of characters as 2018 rol

ls on. “It’s all related to making sure our audience is educated in the Hollywood Hibiscus brand,” Felux says. “The tell will be how this translates into engagement and sales.”

Douglas is a Cleveland Heights-based freelance writer and journalist. In addition to Garden Center, his work has been published by Midwest Energy News, Crain’s Cleveland Business and Fresh Water Cleveland.