All You Ambassadors Spread Message, Samples at Wal-Marts

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All You, a 6-month-old magazine from Time Inc. sold only in Wal-Mart stores, is literally helping advertisers place products in the hands of consumers.


The monthly, which offers practical tips for the value-conscious woman, has created a six-hour event April 9 called "Your Fresh Start for Spring." The promotion will have 2,000 All You brand ambassadors staff tables at 1,000 Wal-Mart Supercenters nationwide to educate customers about the value of the All You sponsor brands to help make an easy transition to spring.


Also handed out will be product samples, brochures and a 64-page All You companion guide on topics like finance, nutrition and beauty.


"I think it's really more of an opportunity to create brand relationships for All You with hundreds of thousands of women in-store so that they can see how we address their everyday lives and how we talk to real women like them," said Suzanne Quint, brand director for All You. "Wal-Mart is excited because they want things in-store that create fun for their shoppers, and it allows us to address the No. 1 request we get from advertising and marketing partners, which is to help them do things in-store."


Sampling is indeed vital to the exercise. The All You representatives will give out products in categories like beauty, health, food, books and stationery supplies. The sponsors, current advertisers of All You, are Johnson & Johnson's Tylenol Rapid Release Gels, General Mills' Berry Burst Cheerios, Broadway Nails' Real Life Nails, Bic Mark-It markers, romance book publisher Harlequin and Centrum vitamins.


US Marketing and Promotions, Torrance, CA, hired the 2,000 women who will speak for All You and its advertisers.


Participating brands gain exposure on in-store creative materials and across a promotional page in All You's April issue and its companion guide. Store locations for the promotion, based on the best-performing Wal-Mart Supercenters, will be posted on an All You microsite at www.walmart.com.


Work for a similar event in the fall has already begun. The theme is, "Yes, You Can." All You is increasing the number of sponsors beyond six. But only six sponsors will be featured in each Wal-Mart Supercenter to avoid diluting the brand's appeal and attention.


All You's effort is unique for such a young magazine with an unusually low cover price of $1.47 and rare newsstand-driven strategy. The All You event is the largest in-store retail event planned by a magazine at Wal-Mart.


But the event also raises concerns over such overt endorsement by All You editorial of advertisers' products.


"We're still pretty careful about balancing that line," Quint said. "In the companion guide, it'll be very clear what's advertisements and what's editorial. I think, essentially as a magazine, the consumer has a lot of trust in us. And, in addition, a consumer has a lot more emotional connection with a magazine that has a tone of voice and personality. So it's a nice way for our sponsors to participate and connect with the consumer on a different level."


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