P&G SIGNS PARTNERS TO BOOST ITS ARIEL

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[dusseldorf] Procter & Gamble is backing its leading European detergent brand, Ariel Future, with endorsements in partnership ads with local clothing manufacturers and retailers across Europe.

P&G worked with Saatchi & Saatchi Advertising, Frankfurt, to develop the campaign for Ariel Future, which has a 17% share of the European detergent market. In the U.S., P&G ran ads last year featuring an endorsement by the Cotton Council, but after testing the campaign in Germany, the company decided to go for more prominent endorsement partners.

20 COMPANIES INVOLVED

So far 20 clothing manufacturers and retailers have signed up, with France's NewMan clothing chain starting in May and Germany's Puma athletic clothing and shoes brand due to begin soon.

"The leading P&G [country] managers meet constantly, with the goal of transferring a successful local concept to other European countries," said P&G spokeswoman Christel M. Karesch.

The campaign will also run in the U.K., Spain, the Netherlands and Scandinavia with local endorsement partners.

In one :45 spot, Frederic Rouilhac, director of France's NewMan clothing chain, explains, "NewMan stands for clothes .... you want to keep for a long time. But even the best quality cottons become fuzzy, and this is disappointing to our customers. Now there's a solution. Ariel Future removes tough stains and also reduces fuzz development. It's the first time NewMan recommends a detergent."

P&G pays for the commercials and airtime. Besides appearing in spots, the endorsement partner adds Ariel Future to care labels in clothes and mentions the brand in promotional brochures.

"This [promotional] effort cost us about $300,000," said Rolf H. Schaefer, ad manager for German endorsement partner Schiesser, a manufacturer of underwear for men and children. "Although we do not advertise our brand on TV and it is already known by 94% of the German population, the [Ariel Future] TV campaign gives it a new relevance."

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