Sawyer Awards Special Report: Integrated Campaign

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Winner: Boise Cascade Office Products
Agency: Bader Rutter & Associates

It's got more moving parts than a Swiss Army knife, yet the integrated campaign for Boise Cascade Office Products connected with its audience through a unified voice and a consistent look.

"Our challenge was to use marketing communications to define and leverage the brand," said Curtis Gorrell, VP-account group supervisor for Bader Rutter & Associates, Brookfield, Wis., the agency of record for Boise Cascade Office Products. Elements in the campaign included print advertising, dimensional direct mail, brochures, a Web-zine, posters, CD-ROMs, public relations and collateral to support for the Boise sales force.

The campaign, launched in 1999 and continuing through 2001, focused on Boise's product and customer service attributes, which included high customer satisfaction, convenience and delivering on promises. The underlying theme is that doing business with Boise couldn't be easier, thus the tagline: "Boise. It couldn't be easier."

The tagline appears on every element of the campaign that targets purchasing and procurement managers at mid- to large-size companies. The companies' CEOs and CFOs were secondary targets. Advertising in The Wall Street Journal, Crain's Chicago Business and regional editions of such business publications as Business Week and Fortune served as the centerpiece of the marketing communications campaign, Gorrell said. Cost of the campaign was not released because of competitive concerns, he said.

"The advertising, which drives awareness, serves as the anchor, and the other elements are the building blocks that help Boise further penetrate the audience," Gorrell explained. "Our goal was to give people in the marketplace a reason why they should choose Boise." Research indicates that unaided name awareness of the Boise brand is now 21% higher than before the campaign was launched, Gorrell said. Another key indicator, purchase intent, has risen 34% since the campaign was launched.

Another integrative element in the campaign is the focus on people. Several of the pieces feature Boise customers who speak in brief testimonials to the high quality of service they've experienced. Other pieces put the spotlight on Boise service specialists who have gone the extra mile on behalf of customers. "The idea was to put a face on the company," said Gorrell, who added that a human dimension is an important differentiator in the hyper-competitive office products category that has traditionally lacked the human touch.

Smart design of the pieces, crisply written copy and a series of very approachable human images that reinforced the theme that doing business with Boise was a simple task proved to be the formula for the gold in the integrated category.

Runner-Up: Sonar Network
Agency: Digital Pulp

The runner-up in the integrated category goes to Sonar Network and its agency, Digital Pulp Inc., for a campaign featuring high-spirited make-believe characters, each designed to represent the various niches that the online advertising network reaches.

The fun, campy images were designed to break through the dreck of technology advertising, said Lee Nadler, president-CEO of the New York-based agency. The use of all the different characters in the campaign was designed to underscore the point that "when the smaller sites in the network are combined, there is tremendous power in terms of reach."

Sonar Network, a division of DoubleClick Inc., launched in January-which meant Digital Pulp faced the challenge of creating awareness from scratch. The wacky images were consistently carried across several platforms: print advertising, direct mail, banners, and what Nadler calls a Web convergence page, where advertisers and publishers can register and learn more about Sonar Network. More than 3,000 sales leads have been collected from that page, Nadler said, indicating that a campaign with high entertainment values is well worth it.

The print ads, primarily targeting marketing executives, appeared in such publications as AdWeek, Advertising Age and The Industry Standard's Grok supplement. Media billings are in the $5000,000 to $1 million range.

Digital Pulp also designed Sonar's Web site, which, unlike the tongue-in-cheek integrated campaign, strikes a more conservative tone. "We wanted to let people know that they're dealing with a serious business," Nadler said.

Honorable Mentions: One, New York; Nokia Networks/Carat USA, San Francisco; MarchFirst/McKinney & Silver, Raleigh, N.C.

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