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Sales promotion and direct marketing are co-mingling more frequently in marketer campaigns, partly because they are demanding more services. Both promotion and direct are at work marketing Alcone's Burger King Kids Club by pulling kids into the fast-food chain and then using a database to boost incentives for the club.

Wunderman Cato Johnson is testing a "hybrid" marketing program in the Southeast for Taco Bell.

The test is for a frequent-user card (a promotion technique). Heavy users are discovered through data collection (a direct application), and then offered incentives to step up their traffic.

"The idea of the program is that some customers are more important than others and deserve recognition," says Wunderman CEO Mitch Kurz, who calls this type of program "Promotion with a memory."


Sales promo shop QLM Marketing is using much more direct marketing in its services because "a lot of what we're doing is going directly to the consumer-the advertising message plus an offer with incentives," says Chairman W. Robert Lipsky. "We are simply solving marketing problems for clients, with more of a demand for immediate results, not glitz."

A change in behavior is readily documented by a change in sales receipts, usually in the short term. This has increased the strategic element of the fee structure at promo shops at the expense of the tactical element-fulfillment.

Evidence of this stronger swing in strategic efforts is reflected in the 60/40 split between promotional marketing (the 60%) and promotional services shops. Agencies are identified as promotional marketing if more than 30% of their fees come from strategic planning and development (see methodology on Page S-5).

In last year's report, sales promotion agencies were split nearly 50/50 between the two.

McCann Direct's Exec VP-Managing Director Pamela Larrick calls the agency's targeting efforts "de-massifying the message."


Customer Development Corp. offers its On Demand Program, a "template" that within a week creates a program with a special offer, using a coupon; predicts who's most likely to buy what; and segments by psychological type, by event, etc.

"It's like using the local newspaper for advertising," says CEO Thomas Lund.

Some new names and addresses have altered the look of marketing

services. In February, multimedia company Heritage Corp. bought Dimac Group.

Harte-Hanks Communications in May acquired DiMark, a Langhorne, Pa., direct response company. Harte-Hanks last year bought Steinert & Associates.


Impact purchased Market Growth Resources, Wilton, Conn., which develops customized retail marketing programs.

Sales promotion company Pacific Marketing Group merged with the Los Angeles shop of D'Arcy Masius Benton & Bowles.

Searching for suitable symbolism to represent its range of services, National Promotion Services surveyed "several hundred" marketing executives and came up with a new name-Gray Matter Marketing; it's new symbol is remindful of Rodin's "The Thinker."

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