Having come to the Continent in 1988, UPS was still struggling for brand recognition, battling against the big three: DHL Worldwide Express, TNT Express Worldwide and Federal Express Corp. UPS had grown slowly through acquisitions and by marketing its worldwide scale rather than any clear advantage over market leader DHL, which had around 50% market share in Europe.
. . . OR YOUR MONEY BACK
Then along came Worldwide Express Guarantee.
The new UPS service-guaranteeing next morning delivery or your money back-finally gave UPS an edge over European rivals. No other company could offer guaranteed next morning delivery to both Europe and the U.S.
"We're fighting in Europe," said UPS International Advertising Manager Larry Bloomenkranz. "There's a perceived leader, DHL. We had to get around that. They aren't necessarily the fastest."
"The challenge," said Ian Davidson, UPS worldwide account director at McCann-Erickson, London "was to start to take UPS' speed capabilities and harness that in such a way that we could make a not necessarily overt comparison with DHL.
"In UPS language, our next-day capabilities mean next morning. Because we are a courteous company, the way we showed that is by having the drivers say good morning."
McCann created a pan-European TV campaign showing UPS drivers making early morning deliveries announcing their arrival with "Good morning," "Buon giorno," "Bon matin," "Guten morgen" depending on where they were. The agency used one basic execution for regional and domestic TV in France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Denmark, the Netherlands and the U.K.
UPS concentrated ad spending on TV to capture the company's increasingly broad target audience; ranging from senior decisionmakers with overall sign-off authority and shipping managers/mailroom managers to receptionists and office managers.
To reach top-level executives, the campaign aired on CNN, domestic news and documentary programs, and in regional editions of publications such as Newsweek and Business Week. For the broader target audience, the "Good Morning" campaign appeared on pan-European sports channel Eurosport and domestic TV during movies and sports programs.
The TV campaign was supported by a slew of below-the-line activity reiterating UPS' next morning guaranteed service. A direct mail and print campaign was launched to generate trial. Drivers handed out cards to potential customers. UPS postcards were attached to packages. Local radio and newspapers carried ads backing the pan-European effort. Even UPS coffee mugs said good morning in several languages.
UPS' campaign was effective in branding the good morning greeting to UPS and providing a door-opener for reps and delivery men. One UPS account exec knew the campaign was a hit when a secretary responded to his greeting by asking, "Shouldn't you be saying that in 19 different languages?"
MAKING AN IMPRESSION
One of the TV campaigns included a good-looking driver who made secretaries swoon when he uttered, "Buon giorno."
"He got quite a reaction from the ladies," said UPS' Mr. Bloomenkranz. "Several receptionists called up UPS and said, `I'll give you the business, but he has to deliver it to me."'UPS
UPS from Page A-4
From a trailing No. 4, "UPS is now perceived as the No. 2 carrier" behind DHL in Europe, based on awareness and perception, said Mr. Bloomenkranz.
Independent European research group Audits & Surveys tracked the campaign, conducting 300 to 400 telephone interviews in each of the countries involved. The study showed rocketing awareness levels thanks to the "Good Morning" effort. Spontaneous awareness climbed in France to 43% from 24%, in Italy to 59% from 35% and in Spain to 43% from 26%. UPS had a higher advertising recall than any other express delivery company in Europe, attaining a 33% score to DHL's 27%.
The campaign also helped UPS account execs meet and exceed sales targets. Also, during the promotional period, actual revenue exceeded estimates by up to 23%.
An another campaign slated to break by early next year in Europe. The "Good Morning" greeting may still be used as a subtext.