Not business as usual
Not business as usual
“We're big believers that integrated direct response marketing works and we're seeing clients more and more open to it,” says Marc Blumer, senior marketing strategist at b-to-b agency Slack Barshinger.
Blumer recently completed a campaign for the Chicago area's Harris Bank that leveraged print advertising, along with direct mail and telemarketing. “We looked at all three channels independently, but we also looked at the lift we were able to get through the synergy of the various channels,” he says. “The direct mail that went to telemarketing recipients caused a lift of somewhere between 1.5-2 points that was measurable.”
Broadening the b-to-b audience
Bob Northway, VP at Alexander Marketing Group, another b-to-b agency, is also an advocate of integrated campaigns, but notes the target audience often needs to be broadened to include more than just the end decision maker.
“In the b-to-b space we're often talking to the [third-party] channel as much if not more than we're talking to the end user because the [middleman may do] an awful lot of the marketing,” he says.
But integrated campaigns do tend to be more expensive, and Blumer stresses that not every client has the budget for that. “The start-up costs for materials and creatives for multiple channels can be high and quickly eat up more than, say, half of a $100,000 budget, which may not leave enough working media dollars for list rentals or search programs,” he adds.
With a higher cost structure, integrated campaigns do have to carry a heavier load and in AXA's case that meant the Challenge had to deliver more than high response rates. “That's only one battle,” Goodstein points out. “Getting new business is the goal and we did that as well.”
The AXA Challenge proved so successful that the company is now looking not only at expanding it this year but also launching a similar integrated program on the retail side for end customers.
“We're believers in the notion that if you really want to get attention and you want to get people to notice you, you need campaigns to take into account lots of different media,” Goodstein says. “But they also need to be multifaceted and distinctive in terms of message, delivery and appeal.”