Universal Studios Goes 360 for Loyalty

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Universal Studios Hollywood has named direct marketing agency 360 Group to expand its customer loyalty and membership communications program.

Eight agencies answered Universal's requests for proposal in October. Two made the final cut to handle a task previously done inhouse.

"The mandate is to increase the renewal rate among existing Celebrity Annual Pass holders," said Carolyn Goodman, vice president of strategic services at 360 Group. "Their goal is to boost park attendance through this program, so they're increasing brand loyalty efforts."

The San Rafael, CA-based agency will help build the theme park's database, analyze customers and design and produce creative for mail and e-mail. It already has redesigned online and offline newsletters and direct mail renewal packages.

Extensive experience with customer loyalty programs helped 360 Group win the business. The agency's clients include Peet's Coffee and Tea, Cricket Communications, Wells Fargo Bank, Chela Financial Services and Score! Educational Centers.

Billings last year for 360 Group were $11 million.

Located in Universal City, CA, Universal Studios Hollywood has attractions like Animal Planet Live!, Jurassic Park: The Ride, Terminator 2:3D and The Nickelodeon Blast Zone. It also runs studio tours.

French-run media and entertainment giant Vivendi Universal owns Universal Studios Hollywood. Other parks it owns are Universal Orlando in Florida, Universal Japan in Osaka and Universal Port Aventura in Spain.

Celebrity Annual Pass holders can visit the park many times a year. Members are offered discounts on food and merchandise to retain loyalty during the membership year. The program was relaunched in May 2000.

"[For this assignment] we are helping them improve their return on investment on their loyalty program," Goodman said.

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