Bizfon Enters Communications Market

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Bizfon, Salem, NH, a developer of communications solutions for small businesses, will accompany its official launch in March with a direct mail campaign to small businesses around the country.

The campaign will tout the company's communications switch that incorporates call management, voice mail, automated attendant, fax-on-demand and Internet access in a single package. According to Michael George, vice president of marketing and direct sales, Bizfon is looking to create a retail system similar to that of computer direct marketer Dell.

"We are not going to exclude retail chains, but at this point, due to the educational factor, we think marketing the products directly to the businesses is best," he said. "In the future, we will probably look to place our products in retail chains."

The direct mail campaign will consist of a drop of 750,000 pieces on a 21-day cycle continuing throughout the fourth quarter. Bizfon will target small businesses that have fewer than 20 employees in industries such as real estate, insurance, nonprofit, advertising and public relations.

Directech/eMerge Marketing, Lexington, MA, will handle the campaign for the company. The campaign will be equally divided between two versions: an oversized postcard and a self mailer.

"Doing it this way will allow us to see what works best for Bizfon," said Susan Feeney, senior account executive at Directech/eMerge Marketing. "Both pieces will contain all of the same materials and test trial offers. The only difference will be in the format."

Those interested are asked to provide their name, title, company, the type of company and an approximation of when they feel they will make a purchase decision. The piece also includes an offer for a free copy of a booklet called Working Smart. The booklet outlines how Bizfon can improve office activity, and if people respond to the offer via the Web at they can download the first chapter of the book immediately.

Ads will appear in March and early April in Incorporated Magazine, Small Business Computing, Entrepreneur Magazine, Delta Sky, American Airlines Magazine, Realtor and Independent Agent.

Bizfon also expects to have four different banner ads on up to 10 small business Web sites. It will run 75 affiliate programs intended to help drive traffic to the Bizfon site.

George said there are currently 9.5 million businesses in the United States with fewer than 25 people, and 50 million businesses that are either operated out of people's homes or are branches of other companies.

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