$10.00 May 2006
Win With The Right Lure Poker & Promotion Less Work And More Results
PHOTOGRAPH COURTESY OF RAPALA NORMARK GROUP
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Vol. 3, No. 5
COVER STORY 8 WIN WITH THE RIGHT LURE
Enjoy a winning fish story when you read our interview with Don Hulstrand, Rapala’s Vice President of Business Development, and find out more about this blockbuster brand.
features POKER & PROMOTION 18 Poker has experienced an unprecedented spike in recent years, so Brilliant Results decided to explore the world of poker from promotion to online play. In order to do this we spoke with Mark Anderson of Proforma Brand Marketing and the executives at AbsolutePoker.com. CASINO DESTINATIONS EVOLVE INTO THE COMPLETE ENTERTAINMENT PACKAGE 24
New development in Las Vegas and other gaming jurisdictions around the country reflects the trend of incorporating the finest things of a luxury vacation getaway into the casino experience. Discover more about this surprising industry trend. By: John G. Brokopp
BEING SPACES & BRAND SPACES 34 Cutting edge tends to market your brand by delivering on the “markets are conversations” mantra with a less grandiose, more two-way approach that starts with understanding the appeal of Being Spaces, and translating that appeal into true BRAND SPACES. By: Trendwatching.com BONUSES VS. INCENTIVES 42 Learn when and how to use these powerful tools to motivate your staff. By Tracey Turner FISHING CASE STUDIES & PROMOTION TIPS 46
THE LAST WORD 64 Brilliant Results speaks with Judy Patterson, Senior Vice President and Executive Director of the American Gaming Association the national trade association for the commercial casino industry. The AGA serves as a clearinghouse for information, develops educational and advocacy programs, and provides leadership on industry-related issues of public concern. The AGA also hosts Global Gaming Expo, the largest annual trade show and conference for the international gaming industry.
columns WHAT WORKS PRESENTED BY THE PROMOTIONAL PRODUCTS ASSOCIATION INTERNATIONAL (PPAI) 48
A raft of tips and success stories that are guaranteed to float your boat. By: Ball Pro, Inc.
Successful Case Studies and research for your next powerful promotion.
Examine the ins and outs of successful Strategic Alliances for Cross-Promotion and Co-Branding. By: Ed Rigsbee, CSP
HOT PRODUCTS… THINGS WE LOVE 44
PUBLISHER’S LETTER 6
Brilliant Results previews a treasure trove of exciting products
HELP BRING YOUR BRAND TO LIFE AT AN EXHIBIT 32
OFF THE CUFF 58 Catch Some Fishing & Gaming Trivia
IT’S ALL PERSONAL 56
LESS WORK & MORE RESULTS WITH COLLABORATIVE MARKETING RELATIONSHIPS 26
Every corporate marketer wants to create and promote a strong brand message. This article suggests ways to insure that your frontline people are walking the talk to make sure that there is no disconnect between the company’s good intentions and real world practices. By: Barry Siskind
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ADVERTISING INDEX 60
Get FREE information from this month’s advertisers CALENDAR 62
“Blockbuster Branding” By: Dave Ribble INDUSTRY NEWS FLASHES 61
Find out what is happening in the promotional merchandise and incentive industries.
Publisher’s Letter FISH ON!! OK, I have to admit, I’m not a real camping and fishing “outdoorsy” kind of gal. If you want to float my boat, just give me a Starbucks Venti Latte and couple of hours in a Nordstrom. But even people like me have to be impressed with the statistics reeled in during our cover story interview in which our own Mary Anne Morrill spoke with Don Hulstrand, Vice President of Business Development for Rapala – the worlds best selling brand of fishing lures. I know, I know… you’re thinking, “What the heck do fishing lures have to do with corporate sales, marketing and brand development?” Actually, a boatload! We see two tie-ins that we think you, our readers, will find of interest. First, if you are like me you may not have realized what widespread appeal fishing has. It is the number one participant sport in United States dwarfing golf and tennis combined. There are 55 million registered anglers, and Hulstrand estimates more than100 million Americans fish at least once a year. That’s a lot of potential customers by any standard, all of which have enough expendable income to go out and create their own tall tales about the big one that got away. Secondly, fishing gear and lures are frequently used as corporate promotions in large and small companies alike. From gear and exotic fishing destination trips being used as prizes in sales contests, to lures and tackle boxes working as promotional and/or motivational incentives with clever tie-ins like; “Reel in the big one”, “Lure them in”, “Trolling for the big fish” and “Bait the hook”. If you have not already done so, you really should consider adding a little something fishy to your next campaign to net a whale of an outcome. After all, if it was good enough for the Academy Awards (as you will read in the cover story on page 8), it just might work for your business too. This month the BR team also dug deeper into casino marketing, poker promotions and even spoke with the executive director of the American Gaming Association as part of our second annual look at how the chips stack up when this lucrative industry puts it own net out to get you to “stay and play”. And of course to treat the “whole” sales and marketing brain, we also take an inside look at the ever-expanding world co-branding and cross promoting, bonuses vs. incentives as performance based compensation options and as always bring you real-life success stories so you can get award winning ideas for your next marketing campaign, sales incentive contest or brand building promotion. So go on get a cup of coffee, a comfortable chair and enjoy reading this issue. Have a Brilliant Day,
Maureen Williams Publisher email@example.com 541-788-5022
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RELATIONSHIPS | RESOURCES | RESULTS
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EDITORIAL Editor in Chief MaryAnne Morrill 717-571-9233 Senior Editors Michelle Donofry, Pierce Roberts Style Editor Charity Plata Asst. Editor Mildred Landis
Contributing Writers Ball Pro, Inc., John G. Brokopp, PPAI - What Works Section, Dave Ribble, Ed Rigsbee, CSP, Barry Siskind, Tracey Turner, Trendwatching.com
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PRODUCTION / DESIGN Art Director Percy Zamora Brilliant Results is published monthly by Brilliant Publishing LLC, 9034 Joyce Lane Hummelstown PA 17036 (717) 6085869; Fax# (717) 566-5431. Postage paid at Mechanicsburg PA and additional offices. POSTMASTER please send address changes to Brilliant Results, 9034 Joyce Lane, Hummelstown PA 17036. Volume 3. Number 5. Brilliant Results subscription rates: one-year $120; Canadian $160 USD; one-year foreign $225 USD. All subscriptions are nonrefundable. Copyright © 2005 Brilliant Publishing LLC. All rights reserved. The publisher reserves the right to accept or reject any advertising or editorial material. Advertisers, and/or their agents, assume the responsibility for any claims against the publisher based on the advertisement. Editorial contributors assume responsibility for their published works and assume responsibility for any claims against the publisher based on published work. No part of this publication can be reproduced in any form or by electronic or mechanical means, including information storage and retrieval systems, without written permission from the publisher. All items submitted to Brilliant Results become the sole property of Brilliant Publishing LLC. Editorial content does not reflect the views of the publisher. The imprints, logos, trademarks or trade names (Collectively the “Marks”) displayed on the products featured in Brilliant Results are for illustrative purposes only and are not available for sale. The marks do not represent the implied or actual endorsement by the owners of the Marks of the product on which they appear. All of the Marks are the property of the respective owners and is not the property of either the advertisers using the Marks or Brilliant Results.
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IT IS SPRING and a person’s fancy turns to thoughts of…fish? Yes, fish, there are some 55 million registered anglers in the USA and that does not include all those folks that fish no license required. Fishing is the Number 1 participation sport in the US. As soon as Brilliant Results discovered this fact, we knew it was a good match for our entertainment issue. After all if it is entertaining some 100 million participants and countless television viewers who can’t resist a good fish story every week that certainly puts it at the top of most entertainment lists. When Brilliant Results spoke with the company that controls 2/3 of the US lure market, we knew we had hooked a real fish success story and found a blockbuster brand. A brand that began in the 1930’s when a hungry Finnish guy with a carving knife made an observation of simple genius: Big fish eat little fish, especially little fish that are wounded. As Lauri Rapala fished the waters of Finland’s Lake Paijanne, he quietly rowed and watched. And what he saw was how hungry predator fish would dart into a school of minnows and attack the one that swam with a slightly off-center wobble.
Lauri realized that if he could craft a lure that mimicked the movements of a wounded minnow, he could catch more fish, earn more money, and not spend time constantly baiting lines. So Lauri set to work. He whittled. Carved. And shaved. Eventually a lure began to take shape. Using a shoemaker’s knife and some sandpaper, he created his first successful lure from cork in 1936. Tinfoil from chocolate bars formed the lure’s outer surface. Melted photographic negatives the protective coating. But most importantly, it perfectly imitated the action of a wounded minnow. Legend has it that Lauri sometimes caught 600 pounds of fish a day with that new lure. And as word of his abundant catches spread, the lure’s reputation grew. The rest, as they say, is history. That first lure was the forefather to the lure that has helped more fishermen experience the thrill of more big fish than any other: the legendary Original Floating™ Rapala. As fishermen around the world began to catch more and bigger fish with Rapala’s lure, it became clear that what triggered them was the lure’s tantalizing Brilliant Results | May 2006 9
wiggle and wobble. Because even though fish throughout the world were different, predators and baitfish always acted true to form. That’s why Lauri tested each lure to make sure it swam true to the unique “wounded-minnow action.” It wasn’t the fastest way to make a fishing lure. But it was the only way to make a Rapala. (To this day, Rapala lures are hand-tuned and tank-tested to swim perfectly right out of the box.) It’s an action as distinct to a Rapala as a fingerprint is to a person. An action no other company has been able to duplicate. And so with every unforgettable trip of a lifetime, every successful Saturday afternoon with a kid at the local fishing hole, the Rapala legend grew. And a deep-seated trust began to form between anglers and Rapala. Weekenders became hardcore. Dads became heroes. And more and more fishermen began reaching for Rapala again and again. For millions, the growing number of trophy fish caught on Rapala lures measures success. (To this day, no other lure holds more world records.) Because they are fishermen first, the people of Rapala know not only what their fellow fishermen need, but also what they can’t live without. Like when the Shad Rap® exploded onto the scene like a surface-to-air bass and word of the Shad Rap’s amazing ability to catch fish spread like wildfire. Tackle shops sold out across the country. Resort owners and mom-and-pop bait shops rented out Shad Raps by the day. And even by the hour. (Yes, it was that good.) Twenty years later it’s still one of fishing’s most successful lures.
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“It was the death of actress Marilyn Monroe in 1962, which exposed millions of American anglers to Rapala fishing lures for the first time.”
There’s a reason more fishermen around the world put their faith in Rapala. It’s a confidence that stretches through 140 countries and is validated each year by the 20 million Rapala lures sold. Simply put, Rapala products make better fishermen. Nothing rushed to market, but carefully crafted from years of experience. No shortcuts. No gimmicks. No flash in the pan, next greatest things. It is a legacy of unwavering quality that can be seen in every lure, every fillet knife, every tool, and every cast of their premium monofilament line. A legacy that continues with new Rapala offerings like premium graphite rods, the world’s first long casting line, and more new lures, new actions, new sizes, new colors, new finishes, and new ways of catching more fish. The sweet smell of success lingers long after the scent of fish slime fades. Tens of millions of walleye, trout, bass, wahoo, snook and tarpon later, Rapala continues to stand the test of time, because through it all, one simple truth has endured. That
which is irresistible to fish will always be irresistible to the fisherman. It was the death of actress Marilyn Monroe in 1962, which exposed millions of American anglers to Rapala fishing lures for the first time. The article titled “A Lure Fish Can’t Pass Up,” ran in the August 1962 edition of LIFE magazine, the same issue that featured Marilyn Monroe on the cover. It was then that, Ron Weber and Ray Ostrom, founders of Normark Corporation, turned their part-time side business into a full-time commitment and turned the family-run enterprise into a global fishing tackle firm. Based in Minnetonka, Minnesota, with companies in 26 countries and distribution in more than 140 countries, the Rapala Normark Group is the world’s largest fishing lure company, as well as one of the world’s largest premium fishing tackle distributors. Brilliant Results recently had the pleasure of speaking with Don Hulstrand, Rapala’s Vice President of Business Development, to find out more about this blockbuster brand.
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BR: How did you become associated with Rapala? DH: I joined Rapala right out of college. My family had been involved in the outdoor business in various ways as I grew up so it was a natural fit.
“Promotional products are a wonderful extension of the endemic business.”
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BR: In your opinion what is the most important service Rapala offers its clients? DH: Rapala’s customers have come to expect the highest standards of quality – in terms of product, marketing and logistical support, and ultimately meeting their end user’s needs. BR: What is the primary secret of Rapala’s business success in the world of fishing? DH: I think it is simple; we consistently link exciting product innovations with impactful and memorable market-
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ing and advertising. We spend a lot of time on how we appear to our customers and the end users with our marketing and advertising techniques. BR: Where do promotional products fit into that approach? DH: Promotional products are a wonderful extension of the endemic business. So, for us it is purely a plus from our business prospective. It is a wonderful extension of our business because it taps into the tremendous loyalty that people have to fishing. BR: Based on the numbers, how popular has fishing become and what are the most important things contributing to that popularity? DH: Fishing is the #1 participation sport in America, in fact fishing dwarfs
tennis and golf combined. There are 55 million registered anglers who spend an average of 22 days on the water each year. Overall because a lot of states don’t require licenses for certain anglers, it is estimated that 100 million Americans fish at least once each year. It is an enduring American tradition that any family member can participate in whether they are an expert or a novice. BR: What events, in your opinion, have contributed to that popularity? DH: Again, it is a sport that’s traditions are deeply ingrained in the American family. There has also been an evolution in that today fishing has also become a spectator sport. As an example, Bass Master TV has a weekly viewership of over 15.5 million viewers. Pro tournament fishing is a fast growing component with many different pro tours flourishing nationally – Redfish, Walleye, Bass, FLW, and a host of saltwater tours, etc. Tournament fishing and the television side of it have really led in recent years to tremendous changes in the sport of fishing. BR: Does Rapala participate in any of these events and if so how? DH: Rapala does not favor one event over another. However, we do sponsor many pro fishermen nationwide who participate in these various tournaments and we also sponsor many of the national and regional fishing television shows. BR: What makes a successful fishing event and how can our reader’s organizations use your products in such an event? DH: Anyone can use our products in a local tournament event and with good reason – Rapala holds more world records than any other brand in the market – over 200 standing records. There are many local
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tournaments that are flourishing today, in fact up here (Minnesota) on any given Wednesday night on one of the larger lakes there is an enter that day tournament. And there is a lot of that going on all over the country on the local and regional level, as well as the national pro tour. I think the best thing anyone can do for an event is to arm the participants with great gear made by a great company like Rapala. I don’t think there is any other secret beyond making sure that you have the best equipment and you have armed yourself with enough information that you’re dangerous! Seriously, fishing is about having fun on the water but if you’ve got a little competitive fire and you want to look like a pro – outfit yourself with Rapala gear. BR: How do you develop your products for a promotional or incentive use? DH: We don’t develop any products specifically for this market segment. However, we know that Rapala is a coveted brand that is a tremendous premium for any class of fisher person. But, we do create a premium messages by customizing an assortment of Rapala products and packaging them together in a promotional tackle bag or tray.
BR: So, if one of our reader’s companies wanted to have a fishing event they could get involved with someone who distributes your products, like Ball Pro, and have something custom put together to add to the event. DH: Absolutely. BR: If the participants are anglers, they will probably keep that tackle, especially if they catch a fish, for a long time. DH: Exactly, that’s right. BR: How can our readers use your products as a part of a successful marketing campaign? DH: I like this question because I think it is something we spend a lot of time at around here. As a highly branded company, we consider ourselves a marketing company. Marketing is imagination. One of the great things about fishing is that a lot of the vernacular of fishing lends itself so well to sales and marketing. Think of: “lure them in,” “casting for customers”, “bait the hook”, “reel in the big one”. By messaging with fishing products you are appealing to the vast demographic interests of the American population but you are also tapping into metaphors that are implicit with attracting more business. Brilliant Results | May 2006 15
bass fishing, and then add a customized label on the kit that highlights the company and its specific promotional initiative. As an aside, years ago there was a woman working on an Academy Awards Gala who requested a bunch of lures from us and she asked us to take the hooks off. She put them in martini glasses because the speaker was, I believe Jesse Ventura, and she associated fishing with Minnesota. It was a big hit; everyone was fishing these balsam wood lures out of their martini glass. We did put some information on the side of the lure so it was fun and very creative on her part.
BR: How does Rapala use promotional merchandise and/or direct marketing strategies to increase their brand awareness and market their products? DH: We will often use our signature product, a Rapala lure, and add a logo’d message to announce a marketing initiative. It’s a great calling card and uniquely impactful way of getting our message and brand association across to our targets. Even though it is a part of what our company is, nothing says it better than the product itself. BR: Can you give our readers some examples of your successful promotional merchandise and/or direct marketing campaigns? DH: Rapala has partnered with many different corporate clients over the years. From sales incentive packages to on-pack value adds, by using Rapala products. We often will create a custom kit targeting a specific species, like
BR: Of the marketing campaigns you and your team have developed which one(s) do you feel is the most notable/recognizable and what was the key(s) to its success? DH: If forced to pick a single promotion, I might mention the Valvoline Oil promotion we participated in several years back where we paired a uniquely designed Rapala lure with a more expensive fuel additive that they were promoting. It was a nationwide on shelf promotion that yielded an incremental lift of 52% for Valvoline. The results validated Valvoline’s expectation of the brand convergence. It was a great lift and in spite of the short-term nature of promotions, we did run this one concurrently for a couple of years and it was very successful for them and for ourselves. We enjoyed the wonderful crossover exposure in a different retail department. We also enjoyed the marketing power of two companies working together. BR: Developing that synergy and making it work for both companies is really an accomplishment. DH: It was fun. Actually, Harvard University did a case study on that synergy and used this promotion as an example of two brands that worked well in crossing over their demographics. BR: What, in your opinion, makes a promotional product successful? DH: Great brand association. When you use something that is not quite as brand worthy, you don’t always get the impact. BR: How does your organization source its promotional merchandise and incentives: via a bid process or via a regular supplier/distributor or agency? DH: We are a manufacture with plants around the world, which allows us to create our own promotional products under our own brands. So we can
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BR: Do you remember the last promotional product you received and from what company you received it? DH: I think this is instructive of promoting with products that meet the interests of the targeted market â€“ as an outdoor enthusiast; I received a nice pair of sport sunglasses. I think of the company each time I put them on. always manufacture something unique, but for the most part in this field we most often and successfully bundle things together to make a distinctive statement. BR: Do you have any final thoughts or advice for our readers about the use of promotional merchandise and direct marketing strategies in their marketing efforts? DH: Partner with great brands. By doing so, it reflects positively on your marketing initiative and raises the level of product association.
BR: And which company was it? DH: It was Oakley. BR: I am sure Oakley will be happy to hear that you remember them every time you use their promotional product. Don, I want to thank you for taking the time to speak with Brilliant Results about the successful use of Rapalaâ€™s products in promotional marketing campaigns, the great sport of fishing and what it takes to make a blockbuster brand. â€˘
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Poker & Promotion What is turning up everywhere…at the home table, at the casino, on the computer monitor and the television? POKER, A GAME WHOSE HISTORY is a matter of debate, was reportedly played in New Orleans in 1829 with a deck of 20 cards and spread to the rest of the country courtesy of the Missippi riverboats. As it spread up the Missippi and West during the gold rush, it became a part of the frontier culture. As it spread the full 52-card English deck came into use and the American Civil War saw the development of many additions to the basic game. This card game has experienced an unprecedented spike in recent years, largely due to the introduction of online poker and the invention of the hole-card camera which finally turned the game into a spectator sport. So this month in conjunction with our gaming and entertainment issue Brilliant Results decided to explore the world of poker from promotion to online play. In order to do this we spoke with Mark Anderson of Proforma Brand Marketing and the executives at AbsolutePoker.com.
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AbsolutePoker.com allows players around the globe an interactive experience that is second to none 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Created with the vision of offering the most comprehensive, interactive online poker room, while always delivering a personal touch Absolute Poker allows its players to play strictly against real people and serves solely as the host, ensuring fair and honest online poker games. Powered by proprietary software, AbsolutePoker.com provides such innovative features as hand history, stat retrieval, player note-taking, chat, ‘locate a player’, six-player tables, customizable table ‘skins’ and representative image selection. Absolute Poker offers many multiplayer games including: Texas Holdem, Omaha High, Omaha Hi/Lo, Seven Card Stud, Seven Card Stud Hi/Lo, and a complete selection of Sit and Go and Multi Table Tournaments.
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“It was all about timing for me. Networking and keeping in touch with people.”
Games and features that have made AbsolutePoker.com the world’s fourth largest online poker destination. Alright you might say, but where does promotional merchandise and marketing fit in this success story. For the answers, you’ll have to read the answers Mark and the executives at AbsolutePoker.com gave to this writer’s questions. BR: Mark, in your opinion what is the most important service you offer your clients? MA: I believe the best service I offer my clients is being there for them at any given time, whether I am on vacation or knee deep in work. They rely on me to help them achieve a goal or problem. It is my job to do that. BR: How did you become the promotional products consultant for AbsolutePoker.com? MA: It was all about timing for me. Networking and keeping in touch with people. I was re-united with- an old colleague from years ago. We kept in touch and the opportunity came to me to
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quote on some hats. Nothing came to fruition for several months. When it came down to the opportunity, I put my heart and soul into a presentation that landed me the opportunity to build a lasting relationship. BR: What is the primary secret of Absolute Poker.com’s business success? AP: Like any successful company, they live and breathe their business. They are a company founded by poker players, for poker players. This is obvious to their clients. They have a player base that not only is the envy of their competition, but they are extremely loyal to Absolute Poker.com and they keep coming back. I think when you aspire to be the best, its clear when you are making the effort. In addition, offering a solid user interface, a fun gaming environment, tons of promotions, and cool promotional merchandise helps make them an industry leader. MA: I think offering a solid user interface, a fun gaming environment, many gaming opportunities, and fresh ideas and concepts for promotional merchandise. www.brilliantpublishing.com
BR: Based on the numbers, how popular has online gaming become and what are the most important things contributing to that popularity? AP: Online gaming, but more specifically online poker has grown tremendously in a VERY short period – especially with the variety of TV shows and other media that have embraced it. Poker has gone through a significant image change. It’s no longer considered that ‘shady boy’s only back room game’. Poker is creating some charismatic household names. Players like Absolute’s Mark Seif have become real ambassadors for the game and the industry. BR: What events do you handle the promotional aspect of for AbsolutePoker.com? AP: Most Special Events – including the WSOP – or World Series of Poker. It is basically the Super Bowl of the industry. Also, I help with VIP Programs, Player recognition promotions and a variety of online rewards. MA: Special Events, VIP Programs, and Online Rewards. BR: Does Absolute Poker participate in any events that are not online? AP: Absolute Poker is really a company that gets out there. I think it is paramount with an Internet based company to make the effort to get in the community and be recognized. It’s important to put a face to the website and they do it well. They evaluate hundreds of events and choose ones that make the most sense. This includes everything from www.brilliantpublishing.com
Beach Volleyball in Florida to Breast Cancer fund raising in Nebraska. BR: What do the executives at AbsolutePoker.com believe has contributed to the increased popularity of poker? AP: Poker is an American game with a long and colorful history. Everyone knows the game, or of it, and when poker became a televised event people were drawn to it in droves. Poker combines skill and luck, mathematics and psychology, and is exciting to watch, especially when viewers are able to see the cards. Combine this widespread opportunity to watch poker, with easy access to play on the Internet, and it was a guaranteed success. Probably most importantly, anyone can play, and anyone can win if they apply themselves. BR: How do they select/develop products for a promotional or incentive use and what is your role in this process? MA: In my opinion products are partially selected by what current fads or events are taking place at a given time. I am very involved in developing ideas and concepts for everything they do – creativity for new ideas and refining old ideas. I work very closely with the marketing staff to develop ideas and products. I am given some free-reign to offer suggestions and execute comps based on those ideas, which may or may not turn into something. It’s a fun way to work. Brilliant Results | May 2006 21
BR: In your opinion how can our reader’s best use promotional merchandise as a part of a successful marketing campaign? MA: I learned something a long time ago when it comes to promotional products. The key is to “Promote” the “Promotion”. Often times the best promotion is an idea or concept. The products will fall into place. If you continue to learn about your client and their services and become an expert as a partner in what they are trying to achieve, you will ultimately build a relationship for years to come. Of course follow through and price is an important peace to the puzzle. I have learned with AP, price counts significantly but more importantly is the follow through. Do what you say you can do. If you can’t do it… don’t say you can. If you fail, that becomes a reflection on you. Ultimately our job is to make them look like a hero. If you succeed they will know they can count on you. Thus – your integrity will bring you your success far more than your skill set. BR: What, in your opinion, makes a promotional product successful? MA: You have to believe in what you sell. You have to have reason. It’s much like designing a logo. In design, the function needs to follow the form and then the form will follow its function. You can’t make something pretty if it doesn’t fit the means. So with regards to promotional products and their success ability, it greatly depends on the function.
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BR: How does Absolute Poker use promotional merchandise and/or direct marketing strategies to increase their brand awareness and market their products? AP: Absolute Poker employs various methods to get their name out. One of the best ways is through their multi-tiered loyalty rewards and VIP programs. By offering quality merchandise for its players – the players themselves become the best ambassadors for the brand. Additionally, they are not afraid to ‘own’ events with merchandise and get something in everyone’s hand. Add aggressive DM campaigns and seasonal promotions and the mix becomes solid. BR: Can you give our readers some examples of successful promotional merchandise and/or direct marketing campaigns you have been a part of? MA: I have been involved with numerous campaigns over the last 10 years. Safety, Workers Incentive programs, Award Programs etc… One campaign in particular was to promote a new product with wiping your hands clean and having a fresh start. So we did a direct mail campaign that involved mailing out a simple note expressing the new product. We included with the mailing a piece of paper/soap that they could use to wash their hand and have a fresh start. The campaign went well and they had a great response to their new product. www.brilliantpublishing.com
“By offering quality merchandise for its players – the players themselves become the best ambassadors for the brand.” BR: Of the marketing campaigns you and your team have developed for Absolute Poker.com, which one(s) do, you feel is the most notable/recognizable and what was the key(s) to its success? MA: I think the one we are working on now is the best. I can’t divulge the information at this time, but if you go to the World Series of Poker this year and attend the Lifestyle Show July 27th, you can find out. I will be at the booth and will be able to answer any questions.
BR: How does your organization source its promotional merchandise and incentives: via a bid process or via a regular supplier/distributor or agency? Why? MA: I attend my yearly trade shows and get ideas; I have a selected number of suppliers I use consistently mainly because I know I can count on them. We want to thank Mark Andersen and Absolute Poker for a look behind the scenes. For more information about Absolute Poker, visit their website at www.absolutepoker.com and to connect with Mark Anderson visit www.proforma.com/brandmarketing. •
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INTO THE COMPLETE VACATION PACKAGE BY JOHN G. BROKOPP
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CASINOS AREN’T JUST FOR GAMBLERS any more. Many properties located in destination markets have evolved over the last decade into all-inclusive entertainment experiences. As a matter of fact, it’s a rather surprising industry trend in some major markets, most notable among them Las Vegas, that nongaming revenues have surpassed gaming revenues. Slot machines, table games and poker rooms coexist in 21st Century casino life with a wide array of dining experiences, luxurious hotel accommodations, exotic swimming pools, spas, salons, world class golf courses, fitness centers and shopping. The hotel/resort amenities associated with many casino properties around the country have, in some respects, made gambling an option rather than a necessity. The accent is on high-end restaurants showcasing the cuisine of award winning chefs, retail shopping, boutiques, fine jewelry and automobile showrooms. New development in Las Vegas and other gaming jurisdictions around the country reflects the trend of incorporating the finest things of a luxury vacation getaway into the casino experience. Entertainment is another priority. Concerts and production shows, which were at one time the exclusive domain of Las Vegas are being presented at casino/hotel properties nationwide. Having an inclination to a gamble on a casino outing or getaway certainly adds to the total entertainment value (especially if you win!), but it’s by no means a prerequisite. If you’re just looking for some relaxing “down time”, perhaps to pamper yourself a little, enjoy a great meal and maybe even do a little shopping, a casino trip fills the bill quite nicely. The upscale restaurants found at gaming properties are given a heavy marketing emphasis, and justifiably so. Recreational gamblers revere them as an added dimension to their total entertainment experience. Culinary adventurers who appreciate fine dining in elegant surroundings often insist they’re the best kept secrets in town, quite often hidden dining gems featuring extensive wine lists and fine cigars at exceptional prices.
In addition to the fine dining options, you’ll discover lavish buffets, many of which feature specialty and themed cuisines. Snack and coffee shops are also part of the experience along with cocktail lounges. Entertainment venues, both on property in the casino and the hotel, and in some cases specially built theaters, are often a component. If the only culinary offering you associate with a casino outing is the cliché Las Vegas style buffet or mundane snack shop, you’re in for a most pleasant surprise with a visit to the upscale restaurants you’ll discover at casino hotel/resort destinations. The emphasis is on prime steaks and chops, fresh seafood, imaginative preparation, extensive wine lists and creative desserts, not to mention elegant surroundings. Many of them are regarded as standouts in regions, which are well known for steak houses and other fine dining options. The best news is that there’s an emphasis on quality as well as value. Not only that, lovers of fine food will be impressed with the culinary offerings prepared by the expertly trained, and in some cases, award winning chefs that the casino companies bring on board. The biggest bonus of all is the exceptional value you’ll find, especially when compared to the prices at similar upscale establishments found outside of the casino environment. Finding them is a snap, plus there’s plenty of free and complimentary or reasonably priced valet parking. Now how can you beat that?
John G. Brokopp is the casino gambling columnist for the Chicago Sun-Times and several other daily newspapers. He is also a correspondent for Encyclopedia Britannica and a variety of other national print and online publications. His published works include ‘Thrifty Gambling’ and ‘The Insider’s Guide to Gambling on the Internet’ (Bonus Books/Precept Press). He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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Less Work & More Results
with Collaborative Marketing
Relationships Strategic Alliances for Cross-Promotion BY ED RIGSBEE, CSP
A POPULAR REASON FOR COMPANIES to come together is to reciprocally promote one another. Ideas are as simple as a local pharmacy and dry cleaner promoting each other with specials or coupons, to regional promotions, to national promotions. Cross-promotions can be developed with competitors or between organizations from different industries. The key is simply this—do you have similar customers? Almost everywhere you look, you can see one organization cross promoting with another. Recently, a cross-promotion advertisement in a San Francisco newspaper for Pacific Bell also involved Round Table Pizza, Hollywood Video, Nokia and the Special Olympics.
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In your effort to make cross-promotion alliances work, develop your process by keeping the below listed steps in mind: • Be clear on what you want to create for yourself or your company. • Discover the; What’s in it for me (WIIFM) for your partner(s). • Develop a list of who does what for physical and financial contributions. • Plan for the unexpected. • Explain to your partner(s) the value they will receive. • Help your partner(s) to have an emotional ownership in the alliance. • Do the above step for yourself also. www.brilliantpublishing.com
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• Execute the promotion. • Debrief with partner(s) the value received from the investment. • Plan the next promotion. “Got Milk?” The California Milk Processors Board, as reported in The Wall Street Journal, January 24, 1997, has been running that national promotion since 1993. They also put “Got Milk” on Girl Scout Cookies. They have even gotten their milk advertisements on cereal, cookies and chocolate mix packaging. Jeff Manning, executive director of the California Milk Processors Board, says, “We need those people to promote for us.” “In return, we affectionately call them codependent foods.” Manning doesn’t stop there. He convinced Dole Food Co. in Westlake Village, California to add another sticker on to their clusters of bananas for the retail market. You got it, “Got Milk” stickers. In 1997 Dole put “Got Milk” stickers on a million bunches of bananas. Milk is getting more interruptions in the minds of consumers. The more Partnering milk can do with products in other parts of the grocery stores, the more sales potential they enjoy. Dole even got an “ah ha” from the cross-promotion, they have been Partnering with Hollywood to promote new release movies such as Anastasia and Babe in the City.
Researching for a presentation for the National Home Furnishings Association, I discovered an interesting alliance in Northern California. They call themselves the Sonoma County Fine Furniture Association (SCFFA). What did they do? Eight fine furniture retailers, competitors, banded together to survive the recession of the early 1990s through cross-promotion and buying strength. They bought advertising together on the local radio and in the local newspaper. They even dictated to the newspaper on which pages their advertising would be located. They developed combined events where customers would visit several of the stores to be eligible to win prizes. They promoted each other to their customers within the store, especially if the specific retailer did not have exactly what the customer was seeking. They even printed a combined brochure, including the address and map locations of each member. The front of the brochure said, People you can trust. Wow, what impact! On a United Airlines flight from Washington, D.C. to Atlanta, the cabin attendant handed me my usual bag of peanuts. But, what was unusual was the size of the bag and its weight. After closer examination, I noticed that an America Online
“They bought advertising together on the local radio and in the local newspaper. They even dictated to the newspaper on which pages their advertising would be located.”
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(AOL) diskette was included with the peanuts. It made sense, a business route shuttle—what a great way to get the AOL software into the hands of business people. Forest City, Iowa, recreational vehicle (RV) manufacturer, Winnebago Industries, Inc. (www.winnebagoind.com) with sales of $665 million in 1999 and Nebraska-based sportsman’s outfitter, Cabela’s have found synergies through reciprocal promotion activities. Cabala’s has provided an ideal venue in which Winnebago dealers have displayed their RVs in more than 30 outdoor events in 1999. Most, run
by Cabela’s promotional arm, Sportsman’s Quest. Winnebago products were also displayed in Cabela’s catalogs. Winnebago, in turn displayed Cabela’s products at their events.
STRATEGIC ALLIANCES FOR CO-BRANDING Bringing together more than one trusted and established brand name develop a marketing synergism that cannot be beat. The advertisement headline read, Bring The Magic of Mattel Home for the Holidays. Just under the headline were several foods producing toys offered. The hook was that it showed Golden
Arches type food. Mattel had a relationship with McDonald’s. And, what quality parent would deny their child the opportunity to make their own McDonald’s hamburgers, fries, shakes and cookies at home? Nestlé/Road Gold Flipz (chocolate covered pretzels), the synergy that can be developed by cobranding is awesome. Co-branded products have, at a minimum; twice the marketing impact and customer pull as traditional branding. Consumers believe that with two trusted names, the product must be exceptional. There was one problem with the Flip though. When they were first
introduced, the consumers’ acceptance was so great that the distributors had trouble keeping their stores in stock. What a problem to have . . . In recent years the automotive industry has found value in Partnering with highly recognizable prestigious brands of clothing and accessories. Ford Motor Company partners with the successful catalog retailer, Eddie Bauer to offer luxurious editions of their popular sport utility vehicle models, Explorer and Expedition. As customers’ perception of quality and value can be influenced through these offerings, they are also willing to pay more for the perceived value. Ford Motor Company states, in a June 29, 1999 Ford news release, its pleasure with its Eddie Bauer relationship in a news release. “Two of America’s most enduring brands reached a milestone today in their 17-year collaboration as Ford and Eddie Bauer celebrated production of the one millionth Eddie Bauer edition Ford vehicle at the St. Louis Assembly Plant, home of the Ford Explorer sport utility.” “It’s almost uncanny how wellmatched Ford and Eddie Bauer are,” says Ford Division Marketing Communications Manager Jan Klug. “Both companies have reputations built on an uncompromising commitment to quality, durability and customer satisfaction. For our customers, this means the irresistible combination of Ford’s ‘go anywhere’ capability and Eddie Bauer’s rugged style. For both companies, it means enhancing each other’s brand.” “It’s no secret why Ford is setting industry records for SUV sales in a U.S. market that currently has 41 SUV nameplates,”
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says Explorer Brand Manager Doug Scott. “We are creating products that really excite the customer. And in partnering with Eddie Bauer, we are expanding the opportunities for the Explorer and Expedition to be a meaningful part of our customer’s active lifestyles.” Because of Ford’s success in co-brand Partnering with Eddie Bauer, they are trying to duplicate their success with Harley-Davidson Motor Company, Milwaukee, Wisconsin in their limited edition HarleyDavidson F-150 pickup truck. The customized version is restyled, all-black, with distinctive HarleyDavidson orange pinstriping and chrome accessories. “A strategic alliance between the Ford Motor Company and Harley-Davidson makes mutual historical and business sense,” noted Gurminder Bedi, vice president, Ford Truck Vehicle Center in a January 6, 2000 Ford news release. “Our common heritage as American motor vehicle manufacturers and our common centennials of 2003 were just too good to pass up as a natural business opportunity. “The partnership makes good business sense,” Bedi added. “The world recognizes both companies as original American innovators known for exciting, quality products.” “This alliance brings together two of the most wellknown and admired companies in the world,” said Jeff Bleustein in the same release, Harley-Davidson chairman and chief executive officer. “Ford and Harley-Davidson customers alike want a distinctive vehicle that makes a statement about themselves as individuals.”
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Even in the recreational vehicle (RV) industry, a manufacturer sees marketing value in co-branding. Fleetwood Enterprises, Inc. in Riverside, California with $3.5 billion in sales in 1999 is in alliance with Bass Pro Shops Outdoor World. Fleetwood has enjoyed good sales volume in its private-label RV partnership with Missouri-based Tracker Marine LP and its Bass Pro Shops Outdoor World stores. Fleetwood built and branded with the Tracker and Trailstar name are sold in six Bass Pro Shops Outdoor World stores and 56 Tracker marine dealerships. RVs promoted at the Outdoor World stores sell for a single, non-negotiable price (unique to the RV industry) and can be purchased over the Internet. Models range from a Trailstar 8 folding trailer to the 29-foot Class C Trailstar RV. Adapted from PartnerShift-How to Profit from the Partnering Trend by Ed Rigsbee, CSP, published by John Wiley & Sons, New York, October 2000. Ask for PartnerShift at your local bookstore. All of Rigsbee’s books are available from Amazon.com. Ed Rigsbee, CSP is the author of PartnerShift, Developing Strategic Alliances and The Art of Partnering. Rigsbee has over 1,000 published articles to his credit and is a regular keynote presenter at corporate and trade association conferences across North America. He can be reached at 800-839-1520 or EdRigsbee@aol.com. For a treasure trove of additional information and ideas, visit his Partnering University Web Site at www.rigsbee.com. •
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All trademarks and service marks are the property of their respective owners.
Help Bring Your
to Life at an Exhibit
BY BARRY SISKIND
“I blame corporate marketers for this disconnect between good intentions and practices.”
RECENTLY I HAVE HAD TWO similar and equally maddening experiences with national brands. Both situations involved shoddy treatment and a complete disregard for the brand promise. In both cases I was talking to representatives that were part of a large organization exhibiting at a trade show. Each organization branded itself as a leader in service and innovation. Both representatives answered my queries with “We are not directly under corporate authority.” While I am not entirely sure what that means, I think it is their way of saying, what happens at head office stays at head office and never appears in the field. I blame corporate marketers for this disconnect between good intentions and practices. It is all well and good to create and promote a strong brand message but when your people
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on the front line can’t walk the talk, what’s the point? This often happens at a trade show where the signs and graphics represent the corporate dictated guidelines but the people who actually interact with the public seldom do. Booth personnel and middle management don’t seem to be able to make the connection between corporate promises and the narrow confines of a policy and procedure manual. And when in doubt they blame head office.
HERE ARE A COUPLE OF THINGS TO CONSIDER BEFORE YOU SHOW YOURSELF IN PUBLIC: 1. Make sure the front line people understand and have bought into the message. Your brand has to be more than the flavor of the month. The www.brilliantpublishing.com
commitment for its expression of corporate intent must come from the top. Before participating in a show, booth personnel should be given time to learn what their company stands for and understand how it should be presented. 2. There needs to be some flexibility built into your systems. Often corporations become so burdened with procedures they neglect to understand that it’s people who make up the company. When you are dealing with hundreds of visitors at a show there is a need for some give and take. 3. Front line people need to understand the rules of face-to-face engagement. As the company ambassador they need to understand what kind of impression your organization wants to leave on its public. Your show staff creates an impression of your entire organization and you want to ensure that the impression is the right one. 4. Tap into your staff’s passion. Everyone has feelings. They have chosen to work for your organization for a reason. If you have treated them well they will have a positive feeling about you. This passion comes through each time they talk to a show visitor. 5. Your front line people have a tough job often dealing with abuse. Working at a trade show can be exhausting. Include rewards for exemplary efforts in your show planning. 6. Let them think out of the box. Fire up your front line staff and encourage them to find new and exciting methods of conveying your brand message. The best of these suggestions should be incorporated into your show strategy. 7. Say thank you. In this hustle and bustle world we often forget the basics. We need to sit back and say thanks to these folks who spend time representing your company at public events such as trade shows and where they are charged with the responsibility of bringing your corporate promises to life. Barry Siskind is North America’s foremost trade and consumer show expert and author of The Power of Exhibit Marketing. He is president of Toronto based International Training and Management Company. He is also the author of Making Contact, the art of business networking, Bumblebees Can’t
“Your brand has to be more than the flavor of the month.”
Fly, Seven Simple Strategies For Making The Impossible Possible and Eagles Must Soar, Seven Strategies for Living a life With Certainly as well as over 500 original trade articles and industry reports. Barry is one of a choice few to write the Guru reports for CEIR. For a free copy of Barry’s™ audiotape, Double your Trade Show Results...Guaranteed call 1800-358-6079 or e-mail Brilliant Results | May 2006 33
LET’S TALK BRANDING. In particular, branding in the real world. There is a genuine opportunity to surpass the now ubiquitous ‘flagship store’ (still seen as the most radical change in the world of retail branding), by offering something truly new to consumers who are not only looking for entertainment, but also for uniqueness, discovery, trying out, hanging out, empathy and even transformation. Don’t get us wrong, Fifth Avenue’s flagship stores, Omotesando’s brand cathedrals, or the new Maison Louis Vuitton in Paris, which comes complete with a penthouse art gallery and temporary Beecroft exhibition, are still setting retail
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(as well as architectural) trends. But to really deliver on the “markets are conversations” mantra, a less grandiose, more two-way approach starts with understanding the appeal of Being Spaces, and translating that appeal into true BRAND SPACES. To refresh your memory:
BEING SPACES “Commercial living-room-like settings in the public space, where catering and entertainment aren’t just the main attraction, but are there to facilitate out-of-home, out-of-office activities like watching a movie, reading a book, meeting friends and colleagues, and so on.” www.brilliantpublishing.com
Now, the need for Being Spaces is nothing new. Sociologist Ray Oldenburg coined ‘The Third Place’ in his 1990 book ‘The Great Good Place’, and described it as a celebration of the places where people can regularly go to take it easy and commune with friends, neighbors, and whoever else shows up. What has changed since 1990 is a slew of new uber-commercial players (with Starbucks leading the way) who have actively launched thousands of Being Spaces 21C style, complete with WiFi and comfy chairs, and are now cramming even more of them into supermarkets, hospitals, hotel lobbies, cinemas, universities, libraries, bookshops, airports, and so on. Trends are often a manifestation of an
existing need unlocked and serviced in a new way. Numbers? How about Starbucks’ 10,500 retail locations in North America, Latin America, Europe, the Middle East and the Pacific Rim, with another 1,800 new stores to be added before the end of this year? Frothy detail: the company now has 165 stores in mainland China, including 63 in Shanghai, 9 in Shenzhen, and 2 in Wu Xi. The competition isn’t slowing down either: from Singapore’s Coffee Connoisseurs to UK’s Costa Coffee, every location frequented by consumers in potential need of a Being Space is fair game in this never-ending expansion game. Is sipping mint chocolissimo lattes the major Brilliant Results | May 2006 35
hook for Being Spaces? Not necessarily: the trend is widespread in Asia in the area of games and entertainment: check out Japanese Manboo and Fujiyama Land, where gamers can game and ‘be’ 24/7, showers included! And with the rise of Free Agents and Minipreneurs, expect more work-centered Being Spaces like New York’s Paragraph and the Village Quill to pop up in talent magnets around the world: members-only centers catering to writers who need a space to be away from it all and actually get some work done. Paragraph (“providing an affordable and tranquil working environment for writers of all genres”) occupies a 2,500 square foot loft space
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near Union Square, divided into a writing room and a lounge area. The writing room (open 24/7) has WiFi, partitioned desks, while the lounge area contains a kitchenette, a large round table and smaller café tables. The same set up can be found at the Village Quill, whose 1,700 square foot loft in Tribeca boasts 20 shared workstations and a lounge area. And how about combining work, childcare and Being Spaces? Look no further than Two Rooms (“You Work, They Play”), another New York based facility designed to provide office space, childcare and community, all in one setting, for freelance and/or home-based workers who don’t have the need for, or can’t afford the expense of full-time childcare. The setup? Two Rooms literally provides two rooms at its facility: one for parents and one for children. The 2,200 square foot communal office area has wireless Internet access, computers for rent, a printer, copier, fax and scanner, while the kitchen area offers an opportunity for interaction between parents. Parents can use the center for full-time childcare and office space, or can take advantage of extensive flexibility and varied scheduling options. Even mainstream hotel chains are waking up to the fact that their long ignored and often-staid lobbies could be converted into prime Being Spaces for www.brilliantpublishing.com
guests and locals alike. Will entire generations of city dwellers around the world come to expect a Being Space to be available on every corner, 24/7?
BRAND SPACES The above spells opportunity. However, what if you’re not in the business of exploiting Being Spaces, like Starbucks, Manboo or Paragraph, yet you see the value of offering consumers a public place they actually like to be, and not necessarily just to buy your stuff? Partnering with existing Being Spaces is an obvious choice, and warrants an ideation session by itself, but how about taking it one step further and actually designing your own BRAND SPACE, a space that capitalizes—in the broadest sense of the word—on consumer expectations set in motion by Being Spaces? Think literally accommodating consumers outside the home and office, becoming a relevant and useful part of their daily lives, offering them surprise, discovery, empathy, transformation. Envision a place to lounge, hang out, try things out, work, relax – Or all of this at once? Check out the following examples from brands as diverse as ING Direct, Apple, Kodak, Eddie Bauer, and Delta, who are all creating BRAND SPACES, small or big, temporary or fixed, that go beyond shallow advertising stunts. American Apparel, everyone’s favorite socially aware apparel retailer, opened a 45-day pop-up store from late November to early January this year, in New York. Boasting daily spontaneous events like karaoke, dreidel spinning, and mariachi performances. Discounts on select items throughout the store were included as well. Here’s a sample of the events: • Dude, it’s Black Friday @ the Pop-Up Shop • Pop Karaoke Contest! @ the Pop-Up Shop • Yoga Is Good For You @ the Pop-Up Shop • Pet Holiday Costume Contest @ The Pop-Up Shop
Swatch’s pop-up watches are a European affair, too: the Swatch Instant Store has popped-up in cities like London, Paris, Barcelona, Amsterdam and Berlin. Target audience is 15-25 year olds, and duration is flexible: as soon as the masses find the store, it will close its doors. It will by now not come as a surprise that limited edition watches are part of the inventory. In their own words: “The pace of life is forever increasing; the public is becoming more and more unpredictable; trends come and go at an ever faster pace and often spread across the globe instantly. In large cities, one finds generally the same chains of stores along the most famous shopping thoroughfares, at most in a different order. With its Instant Stores, Swatch has decided to remedy this state of affairs.”
What better way to experiment with a specific product than dedicate a pop-up store to it? The Eddie Bauer Down Boutique, at 30 Rockefeller Center, NYC, welcomed passers-by from 20 October – 31 December 2005, selling only down merchandise. From the New York Times: “The pop-up strategy gives us an opportunity to reach an influential audience in the New York market and reach tourists who flock there during the holiday season,” says David Makuen, VP Marketing at Eddie Bauer. “The goal is to learn more about how consumers respond to our stylish down product, which is part of efforts to “set a new tone” for the venerable Eddie Bauer brand that dates to 1920”. The list goes on and on, but how about some less than ordinary pop-up thinking? Think free pop-up concerts in cafes, by wellknown artists, and sponsored by a beer brand, would make for a good stunt? In The Netherlands, Dommelsch Beer organized pop-up concerts from July to December 2005. Barcodes on cans, beer bottles and coasters could be entered on the Dommelsch website to find out about dates and locations. Brilliant Results | May 2006 37
BRAND SPACE & EMPATHY So… Surprise is definitely appreciated by consumers, but let’s go one step further: how about (gasp!) empathy? Empathy BRAND SPACES are all about bringing some love and empathy to hurried, thirsty, tired, or out of juice consumers. Take a cue from these creative examples: Why not build a lounge for your clients in one of those spots they really need one, like... airports? Dutch ABN AMRO Bank operates a Preferred Banking clients lounge at Amsterdam’s Schiphol Airport, open from 6 am to 10 pm daily. Meeting space, online access, food and beverages, and foreign currency exchange, all included. Preferred Banking clients have savings or investments exceeding 50,000 euros, and/or a monthly income of at least EUR 5,000. What have you done for your best customers lately? More airport empathy: Samsung operates eight Samsung Mobile Travel centers at Dallas Airport, featuring leather lounge seating, semi-private workstations, electrical and phone outlets at each seat, dial-up internet access, and Starbucks coffee, pastries, salads and sandwiches. Oh, and kudos to Delta’s eight Relax & Recharge spaces at Hartsfield Jackson International Airport in Atlanta. These long counters with power outlets and comfortable stools are great for charging laptops, cell phones, PDAs and other tools that keep travelers going. They’ve been around for a while, but they illustrate empathic BRAND SPACE thinking to the max. If Delta can deliver simple but oh so useful empathic services in the public space, so can you, regardless of what B2C industry you’re in! Brush up your foreign languages to fully appreciate this easy-to-implement idea: in Dutch, ‘bank’, as in financial institution, also means ‘couch’. So ING Bank’s sponsorship of The
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Netherlands National Museum (Rijksmuseum) in Amsterdam involved placing comfortable couches throughout the museum, and near the many masterpieces, turning the art temple into a pleasant, subtle BRAND SPACE. For three years now, HSBC has sent branded vintage taxis, vans, and even a London cab into Manhattan, whether to highlight a golf tournament the bank is sponsoring, or just to celebrate the holiday season. The freebie? New Yorkers who can show the driver a HSBC bankcard get a free ride. A bank that makes things easy for you in any way possible: we think this is an idea that is still ripe for copying! Turning neglected hotel lobbies into proper BRAND SPACES is what the Yahoo! Link @ Sheraton program is all about. The experience begins as guests make their way through the hotel lobbies of the Sheraton San Diego Hotel & Marina and the Sheraton Boston, and enter a specially designed communal lounge area featuring leather seats, refreshments, WiFi, workstations and plasma television. Designed to function as a “virtual concierge,” the Yahoo! Link @ Sheraton website also provides Sheraton guests with current local information such as weather conditions, nearby restaurants and attractions, and local driving directions. In a Generation C/Customer Made twist, guests and hotel associates can add their personal favorites
and reviews of local restaurants and attractions to the website. A whole different try-out BRAND SPACE beast is the chain of Weber Grill restaurants in the US. With four Chicago-area locations—downtown Chicago, Lombard, Wheeling, and Schaumburg (the latter opened its doors in August 2005)—Weber Grills is a division of Weber-Stephen Products Co., manufacturer of charcoal and gas grills and accessories. No surprise then that Weber Grill restaurants do most of their cooking on gigantic Weber grills. To add an extra serving of trying out their products: cooking classes are popular, too! Last but not least, the restaurants make good money too.
BRAND SPACES & TRANSFORMATION What better way to deliver superior value in what is still an Experience Economy than to make good on the next Big Thing: Joseph Pine’s transformation economy (in which the economic offering of a company is the change in an individual person as a result of what the company does). Substitute transformation with—for example—education, and you’ll get the point. Offering consumers a BRAND SPACE experience that is not only surprising, empathic and/or lets them try out things, but empowers them as well, is truly the New Marketer’s Holy Grail. How to do this? Well, for Brilliant Results | May 2006 39
Kodak opened its temporary interactive galleries in New York and San Francisco during November 2005. example, how about making sure your customers leave your BRAND SPACE a bit smarter than when they entered … Check out: ING Direct credit seminars | Yes, the four loungy ING DIRECT Cafes in NY, LA, Philadelphia and Wilmington have been around for a while now, in fact ING was amongst the first financial services firms to take the BEING SPACES trend and run with it. But they don’t just serve free coffee; mortgage seminars are also on the menu. In their own words: “Our free seminars at ING DirectCafés will help make the home buying process a little less complicated. So, if you are one of the millions of Americans who wishes there was a Mortgage 101 class, then this is the seminar for you! We’ll provide light refreshments and snacks. All you need to bring are the questions.” In a Generation C world, it’s no surprise that one of the most popular offerings at Apple Stores across the US, UK, Canada and Japan is The Theatre, where Apple devotees (and aspiring movie directors, DJs, and graphic designers) can participate in one-hour workshops every day, free of charge. Workshops are divided into three categories: ‘Introductory Presentations’, designed to provide an introduction to the latest hardware and digital lifestyle applications; ‘Workshops’, which offer more in-depth information about Apple’s applications; and ‘Pro Workshops’, aimed at professionals looking to get the most out of advanced creative tools like DVD Studio Pro 3, Final Cut Pro HD and Logic Pro 7. Observing dozens of GENERATION C members crowd the theatre on a Saturday afternoon should give you plenty of inspiration to set up your own transformational BRAND SPACE. Kodak opened its temporary interactive galleries in New York and San Francisco during November 2005. Besides the expected exhibits from renowned and emerging artists, exclusive events, product giveaways, and hands-on trial of the latest Kodak products and services, like the EasyShare wireless system, there were informative technology workshops and master classes taught by professional photographers. An overview of courses offered: • Cut the Cord: Becoming a Wireless Photography Guru • Digital Road Trips: New Ways to Shoot and
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Share “On the Go” Pictures • Action! Become a Director (and Nine Other Digital Photography Secrets) • Keep Me, Protect Me, Share Me. Keeping Tabs on Your Pictures in a Digital World
Show us one brand that couldn’t make the link to education and empowerment? Add a funky BRAND SPACE and free beverages to your classes and courses, and both your customers and the media may turn up in droves! So we end where it all it started: a coffee bar! Occupying a former retail space in SoHo, Galleria illy got it right this winter, offering visitors “a gallery, a library, a theatre, a university. And the most authentic espresso in New York.” The university/transformation part of the equation involved three programs:
• Leading food journalist David Rosengarten’s original, theatrical piece, “28 Seconds”, showcases coffee’s long and storied history, what you need to know about coffee biology and chemistry, and how, in 28 seconds, the perfect cup of espresso is prepared. www.brilliantpublishing.com
• CoffeeSense a three-week course centered on coffee preparation and enjoyment. Week one focuses on coffee and illy fundamentals, focusing on taste; week two is about preparing illy using every popular method, from drip to French press to espresso machine; week three is all indulgence, showing how to pair the right coffees with the right desserts, and featuring guest lecturers like leading chocolatier Jacques Torres. The three-week series will repeat three times during the Galleria’s run. University of Coffee is a customized version of the in-depth coffee preparation training illy provides at its Trieste, Italy headquarters. That’s not all, though: Gregory Fea, CEO of illy North America, when interviewed about space by the New York Times, said he counted as an unexpected bonus the chance to get to know
some of his customers. “It’s tremendously insightful; to sit in the library and on the couch, engaging in conversations with them, finding out about what they do, how they learned about illy, what are the passions in their lives.”
OPPORTUNITIES The opportunity? Translating the Being Spaces trend into ways to increase your brand awareness in the public space. The aforementioned examples prove it can be done. Costly? Sure. But, consider diverting only 5% of your advertising budget, adding a heavy dose of creative thinking (which shouldn’t cost you more than a few hours). That would give you plenty of pocket money to get started, creating brand environments that will actually delight consumers by providing them with surprise, discovery, empathy, trying out and transformation. Partner
with hotels, airports, cruise ships and other Being Space-prone entities if you don’t have real estate to play with. When was the last time a run of the mill advertising campaign did that? And yes, as always, there’s more: what about, for example, the online world? Isn’t the online arena one giant Being Space, where anyone can and occasionally does (at least mentally) escape traditional environments? Habbo Hotel! MySpace! Information provided by TRENDWATCHING.COM, a trend/new business idea agency, whose newsletter goes out to over 110,000 subscribers in 120 countries worldwide, who use these trends and real-world examples to stay in the know, and to dream up profitable new services, products and ventures. For more information, please visit www.trendwatching.com. •
Brilliant Results | May 2006 41
Incentives: When and How to Use Them to Motivate Your Staff BY TRACEY TURNER Many managers think bonuses and incentives are the same ~ The truth is they’re not. While both bonuses and incentives can be used to instill employee loyalty, boost motivation and aid retention efforts, the difference between these rewards lies in how — and when — they are offered. Unlike bonuses, which are provided after a strong showing, incentives are offered to a person or group before a project even begins. Following are tips for implementing effective and inspiring bonus and incentive programs.
BONUS TIME Marketing and creative department managers should view bonuses as a way to reward highachieving professionals for a job well done. Bonuses, which serve as a token of gratitude for employees who have gone beyond the call of duty, can be based on individual, team or company accomplishments. While sometimes these rewards are built into an employee’s compensation package, spot bonuses are awarded in direct response to a single instance of superior performance and can be
42 Brilliant Results
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particularly effective. True to their name, spot bonuses should be given “on the spot,” or within a day or two of an achievement. These instant awards not only show the recipient you greatly value his or her work but also highlight to other employees the performance and productivity levels you seek. For a bonus program to succeed, you must make sure your standards are uniform. For instance, the reward could backfire if you give a $300 bonus to an employee for landing a new client one month and give someone else $150 for a similar accomplishment the following month. And don’t forget that to serve as an effective motivational tool, a spot bonus must come as a pleasant surprise. If you offer these bonuses too frequently, and employees come to expect them, this form of reward can lose its bang.
WHEN TO USE INCENTIVES Incentives are useful if employee morale is sagging and you want to fire up your team. If your staff members have had problems reaching certain goals, are inconsistent in their performance, or are finding it difficult to see the benefit of a crucial and chal-
lenging assignment, offering an incentive can generate both buy-in and excitement. Because most marketing professionals tend to be spirited and goal-oriented, creating a friendly, performance-based competition can go a long way toward elevating productivity, incentives often generate that result. The key to developing an attractive and useful incentive program is clarity. Incentive initiatives should be simple to understand and easy to implement. To avoid confusion, steer clear of caveats and confusing formulas. Remember: the more complicated the rules, the less effective an incentive program will be and the more time it will take you to develop and manage the initiative. Set specific, attainable, quantifiable goals and clearly communicate them to your team. In addition, be precise in describing the exact reward for reaching the objectives. www.brilliantpublishing.com
Also, donâ€™t assume that cash is the only reward that employees value. Gift certificates, lunch with the departmentâ€™s key managers or extra time off also can serve as effective motivation, especially if budgets are tight. Above all, bonuses and incentives are meant to make your marketers feel appreciated and valued. And with the hiring climate being as competitive as it is today, such initiatives can significantly contribute to your retention efforts and the overall success of the firm. â€˘ This article was provided by Tracey Turner of The Creative Group, a specialized staffing service placing creative, advertising, marketing and web professionals with a variety of firms on a project basis. Visit www.creativegroup.com for more information. Brilliant Results | May 2006 43
Things WeLove 1. Land the Big One… …with this imprinted rattling lure and (in case of big one miss) fun to eat gummy worms (6 oz.). Add extra style with an available Rapala Lure upgrade. Ball Pro, Inc.
2. No Matter Where Your Clients Travel… …these hardcover books feature the work of premier photographers and will be treasured by clients long after the vacation is over. Or…CREATE A BOOK FOR YOUR COMPANY…Behind every group of people, there is a book to be discovered. Custom books have become essential instruments for companies and associations by increasing a company’s profile, commemorating cultures and histories, advancing a company’s brand, and recognizing a group’s influence in their field. Graphic Arts Center Publishing Company
3. If Your Clients Are Into DIY… …then this is just the item for your next promotion. The ProjectCalc® Plus helps solve 100’s of building & home improvement calculations from painting & wallpapering to outdoor deck & fence projects. Calculated Industries
44 Brilliant Results
2006 4. Get A Grip… …with one of the X-Eight Sateen Grip pens. These retractable metallic look oversized barrel pens with their matching clips and stylish cut out clip holder are sure to get noticed. Adrenaline
4 5. Reel in new customers… … with the Eagle Claw Collapsible Open Cast Rod & Reel 5’ 6” collapsible rod with ceramic guides and an open cast reel. Packaged in an imprinted rod and reel bag. Ball Pro, Inc.
6. Keeping Score Just Got A Lot Easier… …with one of these handy golf score caddies attached to your bag. The perfect take-away from any tournament that is sure to hang around. Impact Action Golf
7. Travel in Style… …these bags made of quality casting leather exhibit extraordinary attention to detail with extra pockets and durable zippers. Add your custom embroidered logo and these bags are bound to be seen in all the best places. Tournament Concepts
Brilliant Results | May 2006 45
INDUSTRY: BallPro® (FISHING CASE STUDIES GUARANTEED TO FLOAT YOUR BOAT) Fishing is the #2 sport in the USA (next to walking). It is an ideal product that people can relate to. FISHING THEMES
Get Hooked On, Land the BIG One, On the Cutting Edge, We’re the Pro’s, Haul in the Lunker, Troll for New Business
Lures, spoons, flies, bobbers, filet knives, rods and reels, hooks, line clipper, catch & release kits, suncare (Unfortunately, 2003 catalog price on rods and reels are wrong)
TRADE SHOW HANDOUTS
• Put your name on a Rapala to “lure in a big customer.”
• Lure customers into your booth while introducing a new product line with a lure and slogan on it. • Resort owner’s hand out logo hook packet at the Sportsmen Show. Resort fishing and accommodation information is listed on the card.
• Lawn Care Company puts their logo and theme on a weed-less lure, stating, “We will keep the weeds out!” • BOB radio station passes out bobbers at the State and County Fair’s printed with their station ID on it. • Local dealership handed out red and white spoons saying, “We Dare you to test drive the new BMW, you’ll be hooked.” • Distributor mailed a pack of hooks to prospective clients with the message “We will help you catch the little fish as well as the big fish.”
GIFT SHOPS (RESORTS, HOTELS, AIRPORTS) • Fly-in resorts as well as destination resorts have gifts shops. Put the resort name on the lures and sell them for a profit and for the advertising. • Give to clients or customers as they check in to the resort/hotel. • Marina handed out floating key chains with their phone number and what time daily happy hour is.
CHURCH • A Church passed out a pack of hooks with a card that encouraged the men to come to a men’s breakfast tying it in with the Bible verse Mathew 4:19 “Come follow me,” Jesus said “and I will make you fishers of men.”
DEPARTMENT OF NATURAL RESOURCES • Take a kid fishing – bobbers and hooks are great items for this annual event. It is often sponsored by the state Department of Natural Resources. This helps “float” the message to get kids “hooked” on fishing.
GROUP FISH OUTING AND RETREATS
• Auto parts warehouse handed out a catch and release kit at the
• Logo lures work great for catalog programs and for employee incentives. Put them in the company store! • Logo a different lure every year thus creating a collector set – limited edition
sales meeting. They opened up the sales meeting with “Land the Big One.” • Take a few customers up to Canada, Northern Minnesota or the Caribbean fishing. Kick off a contest in which you start it by
GIFT WITH PURCHASE
sending each customer a logo’d Rapala.
• Beer company included lure with every case to “Land new customers.” • Box shore lunch-mix company includes a bobber with the product “Let us help you with your lunch.” • The Minnesota Twin’s have an annual Rapala night to increase game attendance. The 1st 10,000 fans received a free lure with Gander Mountain’s logo and game date on it.
• Technology company mailed out Rapala filet knives letting their customers know that “We are on the cutting edge.”
MAILINGS • Airlines sent out the fly match book encouraging customers to “Come fly with us.” • Car Dealership mailed out a crank bait lure telling customers “Now is the time to Crank up a lunker of a Deal.”
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P R O M O T I O N A L
P R O D U C T S
A S S O C I A T I O N
I N T E R N A T I O N A L
A : s t c u d o r P l a n o i Promot y r t s u d n I 2 5 7 , 3 6 $ 8,013,7 1 Promotional products have become a leading advertising medium, offering countless, inventive ways to spread the word about a company, event, new product or incentive program. What’s fueled this enormous growth? Proof of their effectiveness. Recent research studies showed: • • • •
76.1% of people questioned could recall an advertiser’s name on a promotional product received in the past 12 months. Only 53% could recall the name of an advertiser they had seen in a magazine or newspaper. 33.7 % of the group saying they had received a promotional product actually had the item on their person. 52% of respondents did business with the advertiser after receiving a promotional product.
The next time you’re looking for an effective advertising medium, choose one with a proven track record. Choose a promotional product!
And To Think At One Time You May Have Called Them Trash & Trinkets!
06 Sales Volume indd 1
4/27/06 11:47:07 AM
Are You A Typical Promotional Products Buyer? Like our fingerprints and DNA, there are things
• Of the more than 1,700 companies surveyed, about
about each of us that make us unique. But as much
half were manufacturers, wholesalers, professionals
as humans like being distinctive, we also crave
and retailers with the remainder working in various
inclusion in groups where we’re linked to others by
industries such as education, financial, healthcare,
demographics, habits, practices and economic factors.
real estate and travel.
It’s through these groups where we can truly wield some of our strongest influence.
• More than 42 percent were presidents, CEOs, principals and marketing managers. The balance was comprised of general managers, managers/directors, event
Business professionals who use promotional products to help accomplish their marketing objectives—otherwise
planners and vice presidents. • More than 38 percent possessed a bachelor’s
known as “buyers”—comprised the survey group for
degree, and 21.5 percent had a master’s degree.
a recent landmark study conducted by Promotional
• Survey respondents were primarily between 31 and
Products Association International. Since you are reading this magazine, chances are you, too, are a buyer. The results from this study are being used by
55 years of age. • The majority had been responsible for purchasing promotional products for 10 years or less.
promotional consultants to develop ways to better
• Budgets for promotional products purchases ranged
understand and service their clients. See…you are
as follows: 55 percent budgeted less than $20,000;
a member of an important group whose influence
21 percent budgeted $20,000 to $100,000; eight
resonates far beyond your office walls. Check below
percent budgeted $100,000 to $250,000; and almost
to see how closely your demographics match with
the same percentage budgeted more than $250,000.
• Nearly 50 percent reported they could purchase any product they wanted; 34 percent said they could as long as it was within the budget. • Surprisingly, only 58 percent of respondents said
they had a plan to measure the effectiveness of their programs. That leaves 19 percent who rely on informal feedback and 23 percent who (gasp!) don’t measure effectiveness at all. See how easy it is to do on page 55.
48 Brilliant Results
| May 2006
Find a promotional consultant at www.buildapromotion.com
INDUSTRY: Grocery Stores—HEB Stores
CHALLENGE: Private labeled grocery items are either very successful, or they just flop. To be successful, they must be tasted and tried. HEB Grocery Stores wanted to successfully create brand awareness for its customers during the launch of three new private label products.
SOLUTION: With the help of promotional consultant Gary Rugoff of Gary Rugoff Sales in Dallas, Texas, Elisa GonzalezRubio, HEB brand marketing manager, decided to use promotional products in this brand awareness marketing effort. For the launch of the HEB COLA, check-out personnel and baggers became walking billboards with t-shirts advertising the COLA and the COLA tastings. Taste test participants received “pop-out” magnets with magnetic puzzles inside magnetic picture frames. “Also to promote the COLA, we gave customshaped luggage tags to employees and shoppers,” says Gonzalez-Rubio. “Key executives and personnel involved with the COLA launch received acrylic-embedded COLA cans as thank-you remembrances.”
To promote the HEB Bravo Detergent, employees wore embroidered polo shirts and caps. T-shirts were presented to customers who took home a sample of the private label detergent. For the HEB Creamy Creation Ice Cream promotion, employees donned custom-embroidered shirts and caps and presented logoed t-shirts to tasters at the Houston Rodeo. To bring the private label ice cream to life, HEB brought live cows to some of the stores during the ice cream tastings. “At basketball events, audience participants used a giant spoon to land inflatable beach balls inside an eight-foot inflatable ice cream bucket to win HEB logoed prizes,” says Rugoff.
RESULT: “The fun at the in-store promotions and other events plus the giveaways at the taste and sampling tests initiated interactive experiences that made buyers out of consumers and built brand awareness,” says Rugoff. Gonzalez-Rubio adds, “We had a 35-percent increase in attendance at our tastings after advertising free participant prizes. Our COLA brand gained a five-percent market share—a huge number in the grocery store industry. The three new branded products hit our projected profitability level in one-third the time normally required.”
FACT: Have you ever tried to buy a gift for someone you don’t know? If so, you know it’s quite difficult. Knowing your target audience is a crucial key to a successful promotion. Let your professional promotional consultant help you with this important step.
May 2006 49
INDUSTRY: Real Estate—Wells Real Estate Funds
CHALLENGE: Shuffling through the work day unaware of those working alongside you is never fun. It may be difficult to keep up with new hires and what’s happening in other departments, but a closely-knit team functions better than one that just works together because they have to. Wells Real Estate Funds, a real estate investment management firm, grew tired of the formality that had consumed its workplace. How could it bolster employee morale and bring back its comfortable, relaxed feeling?
employees were able to interact on a more personal basis. After all, one wouldn’t want to pass along the surfboard to just anyone. To further build excitement for the program, promotional items were placed on employee desks each Friday morning. Surfboard key rings, FRISBEES™, beach bags, beach balls, sunglasses and plush beach bunnies were some of the popular gifts that kept enthusiasm at peak level.
RESULT: SOLUTION: Cheryl Redmond, the firm’s vice president, knew something fun would get her 275 employees talking again. So she got in touch with promotional consultant Marsha Londe of Summit Marketing in Atlanta, Georgia. Together, they developed a monthly “Catch A Wave” program to rebuild departmental connections and unity. What was the big idea? Surfboards. One employee from each department was chosen for his or her enthusiasm and awarded a full-size surfboard. After autographing the boards, the six employees visited the other five departments and identified another exemplary employee. As the surfboards were passed from one department to the next,
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| May 2006
The surfboards were returned to their original departments where they served as prominent reminders of the network of individuals whose work holds the firm together. “We got everything we wanted—employees talking about the program and interacting with each other, a happier staff and 100-percent participation,” Redmond says. “This is the most fun I’ve ever had on a project.”
FACT: For an extra boost in performance, look to awards and incentives because employees are willing to work hard to get them. That’s the conclusion drawn from a PPAI study conducted by Baylor University. Employees say they are likely to try harder when competing for awards and incentives in teams rather than individually.
Find a promotional consultant at www.buildapromotion.com
INDUSTRY: Manufacturing—Honeywell/Nylon Products Division
CHALLENGE: This maker of a new nylon fiber used in carpet manufacturing needed to develop a formal training program for its 9,000 retail carpet salespeople. LaShon Howard, Honeywell’s Anso® Nylon advertising and promotions coordinator, says, “Not only did we need to bring about product awareness, but we also had to create enthusiasm for the training program by rewarding participants instantly upon completion of the test information.”
SOLUTION: With a goal of having requests for at least 2,500 training CD-ROMs, promotional consultant Tom Morrow, USMotivation Promotional Services in Atlanta, Georgia, was asked to suggest a theme and promotional products as awards for those completing the training test with at least a score of 80. “We used a ‘PUMP UP YOUR SALES’ theme, featuring a weight lifter pumping iron, and mailed the CDs to those requesting participation in the training,” he says. “The theme-logoed rewards for scoring 80 or above included canvas sports workout bags, sports watches, auto safety kits, multi-purpose mouse pads, cameras, space-age radio clocks and Krypton flashlights.”
RESULT: The web-based program and the supplemental CD-ROM with all the graphic content allowed the retail salespeople to access the program 24/7. Howard says, “Sixty-one percent of those using the training program had never had such training. We projected using 2,500 CD-ROMs and actually
mailed 3,500—a 40-percent increase over our goal. We were able to penetrate rural and remote areas where traditional training was deemed cost-prohibitive. Earning prizes created amazing enthusiasm among participants.”
FACT: Customers reorder faster and more often when promotional products are used instead of coupons. In a PPAI study by Southern Methodist University, customers receiving promotional products reordered up to 18 percent sooner than those who received coupons and up to 13 percent sooner than those who received no promotion.
May 2006 51
INDUSTRY: Firearms—National Shooting Sports Foundation (NSSF)
million people with the safety message. While the mobile classrooms were the main component of the program, promotional products were useful takeaways. Banners, decals, key tags, magnets, pens and wearables were quickly snatched up by attendees. But the real show-stopper was a gunlock imprinted with the NSSF logo that was fixed with a 15-inch flexible cable. The product was demonstrated and presented to individuals not only as a reminder of firearm safety, but with the hope they would actually use the gunlocks for the safe storage of their personal firearms.
Whether used for hunting purposes or simply to feel safe in one’s home, a firearm is something that must be taken seriously. National Shooting Sports Foundation (NSSF), a trade association for the firearms industry, was fed up with the careless handling of guns. To help prevent unnecessary deaths, NSSF wanted to raise nationwide awareness and education among firearm owners regarding the proper safe handling and storage of firearms.
The program generated enough visibility and support to earn a $4.9 million Congressional grant for the launch of a similar child safety firearms program. “This program was an outstanding way to provide gun owners with the message and the means to reduce the risk of gun accidents in homes across America,” Brassard says.
SOLUTION: William Brassard, managing director of safety programs for NSSF, was an expert on firearms, but he wasn’t sure how to launch his idea. So he called promotional consultant Dick Miranda, CAS, of North Merrick, New York-based Adstar, Inc. for help. Since this was an educational program, they set up five mobile classrooms that traveled to malls, state fairs and sporting events all over the country. The classes were promoted through television, radio and print coverage in an effort to target five to 10
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| May 2006
FACT: Promotional product recipients prefer subtle imprinting for certain products —particularly the higher-end items including awards, plaques, briefcases, luggage, clothing, portfolios and writing instruments.
Find a promotional consultant at www.buildapromotion.com
INDUSTRY: Retail Department Stores—Parisians
CHALLENGE: The Vulcan statue, a National Register Landmark, sits atop Red Mountain in Birmingham, Alabama, and has long stood as a proud symbol of the progressive movement toward industrialization in the South and Birmingham’s roots in the steel industry. When Vulcan, the world’s largest cast-iron statue, was dismantled because of a desperate need for restoration and preservation, department store Parisians saw an opportunity to help in the city-wide efforts to raise money.
SOLUTION: Parisians Divisional Vice President of Marketing Diane Worthington asked promotional consultant Timothy C. Hennessy of Concepts & Associates, Inc. in Birmingham, to develop an attractive piece that could be sold in its retail environment to raise money for this civic cause. Worthington says, “Our standards were high—the piece needed to be substantial, realistic and threedimensional. And it had to meet our firm deadline.” “We developed a snow globe depicting Vulcan standing tall as the central figure inside. The base of the piece showcases various Birmingham landmarks. We had the globe specially packaged for Parisians in an attractive four-color process box,” says Hennessy.
RESULT: “The profits from the sale of the snow globes in Parisians amounted to more than $25,000, which we donated to the Vulcan Park Foundation to help preserve this National Register Landmark,” says Worthington.
FACT: According to a recent PPAI study, six factors that influence changing the promotional products you purchase are, in order, customer response, pricing and product effectiveness followed by ROI, customer inquiries and convenience.
May 2006 53
INDUSTRY: Graphic Design—3Dlabs, Inc., A Creative Company
CHALLENGE: If you’re looking for anything quality, it’ll cost you. After all, you get what you pay for. A firm believer in this way of thinking, 3Dlabs, Inc., A Creative Company, an embedded graphics supplier, knew its high-end graphics card was a bit pricey—but worth it. How could it convince media and end-user customers to overlook the card’s high cost and focus on its new, high-performance graphics?
SOLUTION: Since creative graphics professionals are unlikely to respond to a traditional marketing message, Senior Marketing Communications Manager Kimberly Ann Stowe knew she would have to reach them in an inventive way. Teaming up with promotional consultant Susan Fellers of Dallas, Texas-based Tiger Advertising, Inc., Stowe decided to play off the card’s “Wildcat” name.
FACT: Developing true, enduring customer loyalty takes an extended period of time— at least a year and usually longer. And studies show that loyalty is much more difficult to form than it is to destroy.
Plush wildcats sporting real cat collars imprinted with the 3Dlabs logo were just what Stowe had in mind. A little bell on the collar added a touch of whimsy to the animal typically known for its strength and speed. The wildcat was placed inside a black bag complete with a place for the tail to dangle out the back. Demo CDs and printed materials were placed in the bags, driving home the theme “Everyone Wants A Wildcat—What Are You Waiting For?” One hundred bags were mailed to targeted press and industry partners. Stowe is confident the plush wildcats caught the attention of recipients. “The wildcats are a symbol of fast-moving and aggressive ideas,” she says. “By owning the best graphics possible, you have better productivity than your competitors.”
RESULT: This imaginative promotion helped create strong product loyalty for the Wildcat graphics card. “The products received excellent press reviews, and people continue to mention the giveaways,” says Stowe. “We couldn’t be happier with the results.”
54 Brilliant Results
| May 2006
Find a promotional consultant at www.buildapromotion.com
INDUSTRY RESEARCH: The Power Of Promotional Products
P R O M OT I O N A L P R O O F ROI: this buzz word turned mantra is the foundation
To measure the effectiveness, track the number of
upon which many marketing and promotional decisions
appointments booked and subsequent sales from
are made. It’s true with traditional advertising buys,
these prospects. More than likely, the cost of the
so why aren’t promotional products in the same
cookies will be offset by just one order.
league—especially since data proves that promotional products are kept by recipients and have higher
If you want more ideas like this one so you can
recall rates than other media?
prove how effective your marketing efforts are, talk to your promotional consultant. Together, you can
In fact, promotional products may be the easiest
create programs using decorated merchandise that
medium to measure in terms of effectiveness. But a
can be tracked, measured and evaluated—firmly
whopping 23 percent of buyers don’t measure effec-
establishing the ROI essential in today’s marketplace.
tiveness at all, and another 19 percent rely only on informal feedback, according to the PPAI 2005 End
Now that’s the power of promotional products.
Buyer Study.* That’s more than 40 percent who don’t know how the money spent on promotional products
How Do You Measure Promotional Products Effectiveness?
positively affected their bottom lines. The good news is that it’s not hard to implement a means for measuring the success of your next program—if you plan for it. For example, let’s say your cold calling is falling flat, and you need a way to break through the gatekeeper barrier and set some
Do Not Measure Informal Feedback Sales Customer Comments Sales Leads Generated Customer Inquiries
appointments. You target 20 prospects, sending them
fresh baked chocolate chip cookies packaged in a tin
decorated with your logo. Included with the gift is a hand-written note detailing how there’s more to chew on than cookies when working with your firm.
Number Of New Accounts Traffic Count Boss' Reaction Intuition 0%
The cookies have become an opportunity for a follow-up call. What prospect wouldn’t talk to someone who just sent over cookies? There’s your chance to set the appointment. PPAI—the promotional products industry’s only international not-for-profit trade association—offers education, mentoring, public relations, publications, technology, tradeshows and legislative support to its 7,000 global member companies.
*2005 End Buyer Study: A Barometer Of Current Conditions In The Promotional Products Industry © 2006 Promotional Products Association International
PROMOTIONAL PRODUCTS ASSOCIATION INTERNATIONAL 3125 Skyway Circle North Irving, TX 75038 888-I-AM-PPAI (426-7724) www.ppa.org
May 2006 55
It’s ALL Personal
BLOCKBUSTER BRANDING IS THE THEME of this particular issue and I wanted to throw in my two cents about a related subject I will call Sub-Branding. It is what I call finding more Brands within a Brand that can provide you even more attention. We’re blessed and appreciate the opportunity to be doing a lot of Marketing and Promotional work for an amazing young company called Nouveau Riche, a community of Real Estate Investors and Trainers. They are providing real education that is so good the American Council on Education has recommended it for Accreditation. Next, they formed a system called the Investor Concierge that is putting real estate opportunities from 6 markets around the country on the Web. Third, they developed ways the average person can raise the capital they need to get things started. Education, Properties and Cash flow became a Sub Brand all its own. We took a look at that and, together with our client, developed a whole campaign around EPC. Then, we helped create phenomenal logo treatment for the EPC theme. Nouveau Riche already has awesome art and branding for the NR logo, but we needed to key on the three elements so that it was simple to explain how Nouveau Riche is different. Three letters representing three words did the trick. The folks at Nouveau Riche are pretty excited about the EPC campaign and we are starting to build on this Sub-Brand. (Interested in learning more about Nouveau Riche? Just go to www.unleashthetrilogy.com and mention you saw this publication)
SOMETIMES, SIMPLE IS AS GOOD AS IT GETS. NIKE AND OTHERS HAVE TAUGHT US THIS.
“If you offer a special service others can’t, that’s your hook and you should explode that into Blockbuster Branding of its own.”
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So, here’s a challenge: Take a look at your Branding. Perhaps inside your Brand are more Brand opportunities, which is yet another way to segment you from your competition. If your product does something others don’t, play it up. If you offer a special service others can’t, that’s your hook and you should explode that into Blockbuster Branding of its own. Figure out what key points you have about your company that you continually want your marketing and sales and advertising to drive home, then create logos and themes and information around just that. It will take on a life of its own and you will then have effectively extended your Brand accordingly. Others out there will continue to think that all they have to do is show up. When you can spot that kind of situation, I promise you there are golden opportunities waiting to be figured out. Play up your strengths and don’t be afraid to Brand them into a Phrase, an Acronym, even a Logo of its own accord. You’ll get the attention you are looking for because people will identify with it. Why? Because It’s ALL Personal. Dave Ribble is President of The Company Image, Inc./Geiger. He can be reached at email@example.com & TCI’s website, www.tci4me.com. Fill out the 8Question Survey and TCI will respond immediately to help you.
| May 2006
Off The Cuff 1. What color combination of lures has proved to be the most productive for catching Bass? a. Blue & Green b. Red & Black c. Red & White d.Yellow & Blue 2. The average angler trolls for how many days for each Blue Marlin caught? a. 1 b. 2 c. 5 d. 10 3. How many lakes are estimated to exist in Alaska? a. 3 million b. 1 million c. 500,000 d. 25,000
4. What percentage of pet owners has fish? a. 1 in 5 b. 1 in 8 c. 1 in 10 d. 1 in 20 5. What country’s Indian word name means “place of many fish”? a. Panama b. Mexico c. Costa Rica d. Canada 6. Casinos make more money on which denomination of slot machines? a. Nickel b. Quarter c. Dollar d. All the same 7. Among table games in the U.S. craps is the … a. Most popular b. 2nd most popular c. 3rd most popular d. 4th most popular 8. In a standard deck of cards the four suits – Spades, Clubs, Diamonds, Hearts – represent what four civilizations? a. Middle East Biblical, Greek, Roman Empire, Arthurian England b. Greek, Roman Empire, Middle Ages French, Arthurian England c. Middle East Biblical, Greek, Roman Empire, Holy Roman Empire d. Middle East Biblical, Greek, Holy Roman Empire, Middle Ages French 9. The Bar Symbol on Slot Machines was derived from… a. The inventor’s original artwork b. The Bell Fruit Gum Logo c. The Bar Tool Company Logo d. An unknown artist’s design 10. In Roman times dice were fashioned from… a. marble b. wood c. sheep’s knuckles d. hardened bread
“Many of the most highly publicized events of my presidency are not nearly as memorable or significant in my life as fishing with my daddy.” ~ Jimmy Carter (1924 – ) 39th President of the United States 1977-1981
“Luck never gives; it only lends.”
B1. You may have spent too much time at the table if you know the value of a stack of $5 chips stacked beside a $5 chip placed vertically on its side is… a. $40 b. $45 c. $50 d. $60 B2. You may know more than the average angler if you know a shrimp’s heart is located in its… a. tail b. mid section c. head d. none of the above
~ Swedish Proverb
Answers: 1 – c; 2 – d; 3 – a; 4 – c; 5 – a; 6 – a; 7 – b; 8 – c; 9 – b; 10 – c; B1 – d; B2 – c.
58 Brilliant Results
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60 Brilliant Results
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INDUSTRY NEWS FLASHES ~ RAINING ROSE RECOGNIZED BY INC MAGAZINE For the third year running, Cedar Rapids, Iowa-based supplier Raining Rose Inc. has been recognized by Inc Magazine as one of America’s fastest growing urban businesses. This producer of all-natural body care products and soy candles ranks 42 (up from number 52 last year) on the 2006 ICIC-Inc Magazine Inner City 100 list of the fastest growing inner city companies in America. “Being a part of this remarkable group of companies has given our organization a great deal of credibility with customers, prospects, vendors and potential employees,” says Chuck Hammond, President/CEO.
initiatives that have resulted in tangible benefits to local communities. Accepting the award at the presentation ceremony during the Travel & Tourism Summit in Washington DC, Executive Vice President and Director Mr. Eduardo Villafranca thanked the judging panel adding, “We are honored to belong to an industry that is embracing a commitment toward human development by actively pursuing and encouraging the highest corporate responsibility standards. We would also like to convey special thanks on behalf of our local partners, the rural communities neighboring Hotel Punta Islita that have embraced opportunity with bold enthusiasm. Their drive has provided fertile ground for Responsible Tourism policies and programs, gradually transforming an impoverished isolated region into a thriving collective of artists, entrepreneurs, and travel professionals.”
WHILE TRADITIONAL ADVERTISING MEDIA DIPS, PROMOTIONAL ADVERTISING RISES TO A RECORD HIGH A recent study conducted exclusively for Promotional Products Association International (PPAI) confirms that estimated sales of promotional products in 2005 increased 4.06 percent to $18,013,763,752, the largest sales figure in the history of the industry. The study was conducted exclusively for PPAI by Richard A. Nelson, Ph.D., at the Manship School of Mass Communication at Louisiana State University and Rick Ebel, principal of Glenrich Business Studies in Corvallis, Oregon.
CONGRATULATIONS to Blanchester, Ohio-based supplier The Allen Company and Aliquippa, Pennsylvania-based supplier Moderne Glass Co., Inc. for winning The Society of Glass and Ceramic Decorators (SGCD) Discovery Awards. These awards recognize outstanding decorated ceramic and glassware design and technical achievement. Design Excellence Awards Category: Specialty Novelties and Souvenirs— Glass Moderne Glass Category: Specialty Novelties and Souvenirs— Ceramic The Allen Company
COSTA RICA HOTEL PUNTA ISLITA HONORED AS THE WINNER OF THE 2006 INVESTOR IN PEOPLE AWARD
Category: Tabletop Foodservice—Casual/Glass The Allen Company
Hotel Punta Islita is thrilled to announce its selection as the winner of the 2006 Investor in People Award sponsored by the World Travel & Tourism Council. As part of the Tourism for Tomorrow Awards, this accolade celebrates industry
Technical Excellence Awards Category: Direct Print Glass Moderne Glass
Category: Direct Print Ceramic
Brilliant Results | May 2006 61
2006 Calendar brilliant results
RELATIONSHIPS | RESOURCES | RESULTS
June 1 – 3
The Awards & Custom Gift Show – Indianapolis Indiana Convention Center & RCA Dome, Indianapolis, IN Information at: http://www.nbmshows.com or Call: 800.560.9941
June 2 – 6
ASCO Annual Meeting & Exposition Georgia World Congress Center, Atlanta, GA Information at: www.asco.org or Call: 888-282-2552
June 3 – 9
InfoComm International Orange County Convention Center, Orlando, FL Information at: www.infocomm.org or Call: 800.659.7469
June 5 – 8
SAAGNY Promotions East Atlantic City Convention Center, Atlantic City, NJ Information at: www.promotionseast.com or Call: 972.258.3075
June 6 – 7
PMA’s 15th Annual Star Power® Conference Universal Globe Theatre, Universal City, CA Information at: www.pmalink.org or Call: (212) 420-1100
June 13 2:00 PM ET Smart Sampling? Improving Your Sampling Promotions Presented by the PMA Product Sampling & Demonstration Council. Speaker: Art Averbook, President, CO-OP Promotions, Co-Author ‘ALL ABOUT SAMPLING’. Information at: www.pmalink.org or Call: (212) 420-1100 June 20 – 22
Licensing 2006 International Jacob K. Javits Convention Center, New York, NY Information at: www.licensingshow.com or Call: 888.644.2022
June 25 – 28
Society for Human Resources Management 58th Annual Conference & Exposition Washington DC Convention Center, Washington, DC Information at: www.shrm.org/conferences/ or Call: 800.283.SHRM
June 27 2:00 PM ET PMA Audio Web Seminar Value Added Promotions Presented by the PMA Product Sampling & Demonstration Council. Speaker: Art Averbook, President, CO-OP Promotions, Co-Author ‘ALL ABOUT SAMPLING’.Information at: www.pmalink.org or Call: (212) 420-1100 June 27 – 30
WCBF’s Global Six Sigma Summit & Industry Awards Venetian Hotel & Casino, Las Vegas, NV Information at: www.gsssa.com or Call: 800.959.6549
JULY July 12 – 14
Direct Marketing Assn of Washington 2006 Conference & Expo Marriott Wardman Park Hotel, Washington, D.C. Information at: www.dmaw.org or Call: 703.706.0387
July 12 – 15
NAFCU 39th Annual Conference & Exhibition Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino, Las Vegas, NV Information at: www.nafcu.org or Call: 800.336.4644
July 20 – 22
The Awards & Custom Gift Show – Long Beach Long Beach Convention and Entertainment Center, Long Beach, CA Information at: http://www.nbmshows.com or Call: 800.560.9941
* To have your show listed in our Calendar please send your information to Brilliant Results magazine. *
62 Brilliant Results
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The opportunity presented some THE AMERICAN GAMING ASSOCIATION unique and interesting challenges, so (AGA) is the national trade associaI jumped at it. The commercial casino tion for the commercial casino indusindustry and the AGA certainly have try. In addition to representing the grown tremendously in the last 11 interests of its members on federal years, and now we are one of the legislative and regulatory issues, the most highly regarded trade groups in AGA serves as a clearinghouse for Washington. I’m proud to have information, develops educational played such an integral role in that and advocacy programs, and prosuccess. vides leadership on industry-related issues of public concern. The AGA also hosts Global Gaming Expo, the BR: In your opinion, what is the sinlargest annual trade show and con- Judy Patterson gle most important service/benefit that ference for the international gaming Senior Vice President and the American Gaming Association Executive Director industry. offers its members? Judy Patterson is senior vice American Gaming Association JP: I’m not sure I could narrow it president and executive director of the AGA. She down to just one thing. Obviously, our primary puradministers the association’s day-to-day activities pose here in Washington is to serve as the nationand has set up industry task forces to study issues al voice of the commercial casino industry on as diverse as taxes, bank secrecy act provisions, Capitol Hill, and we have over the years had a communications and responsible gaming. She was great deal of success communicating our issues to instrumental in the organization of the National decision makers here and protecting our industry Center for Responsible Gaming, an independent from potentially damaging federal legislation. In nonprofit organization that administers the nation’s fact, I think the education about the industry we only peer-reviewed research grants program provide to a whole host of audiences – whether it focused exclusively on problem and underage gam- be to members of Congress, the general public, bling. Patterson also works with consultants, aca- members of the media, regulators or community demic institutions and state gaming associations to leaders – may be the most valuable service we prodevelop independent studies of gaming issues. vide to our members. Obviously, there have been – and still are, in BR: How and when did you become involved with some cases – a lot of misperceptions about casino gaming out there, and over the years we’ve created the American Gaming Association? JP: I met Frank Fahrenkopf, the president and an enormous library of research, tools and informaCEO of the AGA, when I was working as a special tion that sets the record straight about the real assistant to the president of the American Bar impacts and contributions of our industry in the Association (ABA) back in the early ‘90s. When communities where we operate. We use these tools Frank was approached by leaders in the gaming here in Washington and provide them as resources industry to create the AGA, he invited me on for our members to leverage as well, and over the board to run the day-to-day operations of the years we’ve been pretty successful at debunking organization, and we opened our doors in 1995. many of the myths out there about gaming. We also
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have created a number of industry wide programs that take a proactive approach to issues like responsible gaming and diversity, and I think we’ve made a tremendous impact in these areas. The coordination of efforts has been key to that success, I think, and these programs have become very important to our member companies and our industry as a whole. We’re constantly developing new programs and ways to enhance these efforts. BR: How do you use promotional merchandise and/or collateral materials to increase interest in the issues of interest to the American Gaming Association and its members? JP: We produce a number of research white papers, reports and studies each year, including the AGA’s flagship publication, State of the States: The AGA Survey of Casino Entertainment, which details the national economic impact of our industry and includes new public opinion polling results each year. This and every other report we produce are a great help to our members, who use them to educate their local and state officials about our industry. They’re also very helpful for members of the media, as well as elected officials, financial analysts, regulators and others who need to stay on top
of the latest information about our industry. We’ve also developed a variety of brochures that our members make available in their casinos and utilize for educational purposes, including pieces focusing on the odds of winning or losing at various games of chance within the casino; explaining our industry wide Code of Conduct for Responsible Gaming; and presenting guidelines for patrons on how to gamble responsibly. Additionally, we produce a host of newsletters at the AGA to educate both our members and other audiences about both association and industry activities. We have separate publications focused on specific segments of the industry, like responsible gaming and diversity, and each is targeted to specific audiences, both within our membership and among appropriate third-party groups. In terms of actual promotional merchandise, much of what we produce is created in conjunction with our annual Responsible Gaming Education Week, which is targeted at our industry employees and, to a lesser extent, our customers. We’ll select a new theme each year, and we’ll communicate with our members about the details of the upcoming campaign. Then, we’ll create collateral materials like educational posters, buttons, lapel ribbons, table tents and other items
Brilliant Results | May
that reflect the selected theme. We design the pieces here, then allow our members to place orders for the materials through our Web site. So, you end up with campaign collateral materials being showcased in most major casino properties across the country. Last year, we took advantage of a fashion craze and created responsible gaming awareness wristbands imprinted with the words “Keep it Fun” and packaged with a card displaying a responsible gaming message. That campaign lent itself to a lot of really fun collateral materials. We also use promotional pieces in conjunction with our conferences and educational events. We provide our attendees with the standard conference take-aways – bags, pad folios, and the like. Typically, our member companies will offer to sponsor these various items, so pieces will reflect both our and the sponsor logos. We’ve occasionally developed promotional items in conjunction with our events at political conventions, but obviously those are few and far between. BR: How do you decide what materials to produce for your Responsible Gaming Education Week? JP: We create materials and signage that can be prominently placed in back-of-the-house employee areas. Additionally, Responsible Gaming Education Week is a chance for our employees to serve as ambassadors for our responsible gaming message, so we create buttons, lapel ribbons, stickers and other items that employees can discreetly wear on their uniforms to prompt inquiry from customers. We try to create items that will be subtly visible throughout the casino property so the message is reinforced at every turn. BR: How do you source your promotional merchandise, via a bid process or via a regular supplier/distributor or agency? Why? JP: For recurring projects, like the buttons, ribbons, posters and other items we provide to our members every year for Responsible Gaming Week, we’ll use the same vendors year after year. They know us, know the project, and know the quality of product we expect. For the same reason, we also tend to use the same two printers for all our reports, studies and collateral education materials. It’s always helpful to work with someone who understands your needs and expectations before you even get started, and over the years, these vendors have become a part of the AGA family. For our trade shows and conferences, we often work with meeting planning consultants, and many
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of them have preferred vendors for things like attendee pad folios, nametag lanyards, etc. So we’ll tend to go with those companies that have an established relationship with someone on our team. For one-time projects like the responsible gaming awareness wristbands we developed last year, we’ll usually do some research here in our office to identify a handful of companies who develop that particular item, and then we’ll ask for bids from each. Obviously, we look for the best combination of quality of product and competitive pricing when making our decisions. BR: What is your personal favorite (or most successful) promotional or marketing campaign and why? JP: To be honest, I don’t read most direct mail that gets sent to me. I do tend to notice when something is packaged with my newspaper in the morning, but that’s about it. Although they’re quite simple, the promotional items I do tend to use are the notepads that different vendors or potential vendors send our way. Those are useful on a day-to-day basis. Otherwise, I don’t pay much attention to direct marketing pieces that get sent to me. As far as AGA campaigns go, I think the most successful promotional pieces we’ve ever created were the responsible gaming awareness wristbands we developed last year for our eighth annual Responsible Gaming Education Week. The wristband craze was a phenomenon we decided we could latch onto to spread our message about responsible gaming, and the program was tremendously popular. Casino employees throughout the country wore them throughout our awareness week, and many of our casinos sold them to customers as well. Even today, they’re still selling briskly, and all proceeds are being donated to the National Center for Responsible Gaming. So far, we’ve raised more than $50,000 through this campaign alone. BR: Do you remember the last promotional merchandise or incentive that you received? Where, when and from what organization? JP: Going back to the newspaper packaging, I got a coupon for a new drink at Starbucks wrapped up with my Sunday New York Times, so I brought it in for my assistant to use. • For more information about the American Gaming Association visit their website at www.americangaming.org. www.brilliantpublishing.com
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