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Friday, August 27, 2010

Know Your IBM


Agency: CiLoyalty, IBM Corporation & Merscient Inc.
Client: IBM Corporation

The Know Your IBM (KYI) program is IBM’s primary sales and training initiative for sellers to the small and medium-sized business market. In 2009, despite the economic downturn, the marketing team was tasked with driving the KYI program to new levels of engagement in learning and cost-effective selling. The program needed to be deployed and managed across 104 countries in 12 languages. 

Know Your IBM

IBM charged its marketing team with ambitious sales targets and ROI goals, including completing 195,000 education modules, generating 9,700 active participants and producing $850 million in revenue.

The loyalty program included Learn and Earn, a component that provided incentives for educational and learning behavior, and Sell and Earn, in which participants were motivated to sell IBM products and services. Participants received electronic monthly activity statements customized by country.

Communication tactics included motivational online interaction; in-person visits from IBM account managers and individually scripted teasers. A real-time online reporting tool measured email open rates, clickthroughs and time and day of each action. The information was cross-referenced with email content, number of words used, number of images embedded and type of headline utilized. Together this data created an individual profile on every participant. As the information became more detailed, communications tactics were developed to achieve greater cut through and call to action. 


Two interactive website portals were also created, one for the Learn and Earn module and logging of sales, and the other for the leader-boards, rewards and redemptions. Results and important announcements were communicated via email to all program participants. Leader boards were created in each country and the top achievers were awarded with bonus loyalty points.

The promotions averaged an 82% increase in module completion compared to the same period in 2008. Participants in the loyalty program completed 195,395 modules, an 11.2% year over year increase. Active participants increased 10.1%; and sales increased 10.1% for a total of $864 million.

Cinemax High Def’n Awesome


Agency: Civic Entertainment Group
Client: Cinemax


Cable network Cinemax, which runs in 12 million households, was breaking a consumer ad campaign “High Def’n Awesome” to tout its best-in-class HD service and fourth-quarter line up of HD films. The network wanted to raise the energy for operators in affiliate partners’ call centers and help them internalize the consumer advertising message.
Call center operators have stressful jobs, handling 40-70 calls a day selling cable service packages to consumers. 

They’re flooded with product information that’s tough to absorb and remember. To give them an idea of what the customers would experience, High Def’n Dance Crews recruited from high profile acts such as Janet Jackson and Avril Lavigne – staged surprise performances in call center break rooms and lobbies, engaging operators for 20-40 minutes with their dance moves and a custom rap song touting the benefits of Cinemax’s 1080i HD and new fourth-quarter programming line-up.

Operators enjoyed the experience, posing for photos, taking part in mini dance-offs and competing for branded prizes, including t-shirts and movie vouchers.

Every major cable affiliate participated, including AT&T, Charter, Comcast, Cox, Time Warner and Verizon, and more than 8,000 operators in 18 markets were directly engaged. Overall, Cinemax sales through call centers increased 12% during the campaign period. 

U-Drive Regional Direct Response Program


Agency: Fathom Communications
Client: Navistar, Inc.


Navistar International Corporation, which produces International brand commercial trucks and MaxxForce brand diesel engines, as well as truck and diesel engine service parts, relies on International truck dealers to move current inventory in preparation for new 2010 models.

Research showed that small fleet customers were still unfamiliar with the upcoming 2010 emissions reduction changes and the company’s Advanced EGR technology solution. With the economic depression, not only were companies’ trucks sitting for lack of business, but they were cutting costs in all areas. The good news was, they were still planning for the future and knew that if a good deal came along on the perfect truck, they would consider it, fearing that emissions changes would drive up prices in January.

Objectives were to support International’s marketing efforts in a down economy, capture data from hard-to-reach small customers, generate leads and drive sales by providing education on 2010 emissions. The agency provided up to 1,000 contacts of long-haul fleet managers and small to medium-sized business owners with a fleet size of 299 or less for 33 participating dealers for a year-long communications plan.

The program had three phases, starting with a self-mailer, which drove customers and prospects to a personalized URL to learn more about 2010 emissions changes and the benefits of MaxxForce Advanced EGR, with the ability to download special offers from their local dealer.  Reminder emails were also sent out to encourage customers to see their dealer and take advantage of limited-time offers. Mailers were highly customized with dealer logos, a list of locations, a personal letter, special offers and inventory photos.

Telemarketing was used to reach out to a portion of the audience to encourage them to complete the online survey, to help capture data. In each communication, the dealer was positioned as their business partner and 2010 emissions expert.

The program generated a total of 1,536 responses – a 1.9% response rate – and collected 1,369 new email addresses with 80% of the audience choosing to opt-in to the company’s monthly e-newsletter. From the personalized URLS and telemarketing surveys, 1,560 leads were generated and 1,584 trucks were sold. 

Advertising Week Event Activation


Agency: Momentum Worldwide
Client: Microsoft Advertising

Microsoft Advertising wanted to create buzz and a unique experience for attendees at Advertising Week with its recently launched brand campaign, “The Unified Theory of Advertising.” They were also the lead sponsor for MIXX/IAB and wanted to break through conference clutter and ignite new interest in Microsoft’s business advertising solutions.
To create the perception that Microsoft Advertising was everywhere and to demonstrate the power of unifying, 1,000 red RFID bracelets were given to registered visitors, providing real-time information for personalized interaction with each wearer, including pulling them to the front of a line, giving them VIP seats at conference events, providing free rides in Microsoft’s pedi-cabs and allowing entry to The LOFT party. The red color tied in with Microsoft Advertising’s new RED identity. When the number of bracelet holders who scanned in reached critical mass, the Microsoft “unified theory” was proven and XBOX and ZUNE prizes were given away.


Users could follow online via a live, interactive Bing map tracking event attendance and Twitter feeds, sign up for text alerts when events approached critical mass, or check out other things that were happening in real time.

The unified theory was strengthened within the advertising community throughout weeklong communication streams. The RFID bracelets created a cohesive experience, allowing attendees to feel that they were part of the Microsoft Advertising community. The campaign also gave the sales team an ownable experience to work with, while the RFID registration drew in new potential partners. 

Overall, the campaign and experience generated 12,000 brand impressions, 21 unique brand footprints, 452 opt-ins and 893 RFID registrants. Twelve out of the 16 events achieved critical mass.