Deluxe campaign a win on three fronts

Results of a consumer survey helped Deluxe and AOR Padilla Speer Beardsley drive awareness and sales for the company.

Client: Deluxe (St. Paul, MN)
Agency: Padilla Speer Beardsley (Minneapolis, MN)
Campaign: Holiday PR program
Duration: October 2012 – January 2013
Budget: $75,000

Results of a consumer survey helped Deluxe and AOR Padilla Speer Beardsley drive awareness and sales for the company and three of its business units – SEO and marketing firm OrangeSoda; online customized printing service PsPrint; and Bags & Bows, which sells personalized gifts and packaging.

“[Our challenge is] creating a new value proposition for an almost 100-year-old company whose roots were in check printing,” explains Terri Shapiro, Deluxe's executive director, brand and media relations. “We've acquired a number of small business products and marketing services companies. This campaign helped broaden the reputation of Deluxe and several of these business units.”

The survey, conducted by Opinion Research, revealed insights into consumers' holiday shopping habits and preferences that were relevant to small business owners as well as consumers. 

“The survey created a body of newsworthy information...related to gift wrapping, holiday cards, and online shopping,” says agency SVP Tom Jollie. “All related to the three business units and all are topics the media loves to talk about in the fourth quarter.”

An infographic summarizing survey results, spokespeople from each unit and outside small business experts with large social media followings helped drive messaging.

A press release outlining survey results and the infographic was distributed in early October to general consumer and business media. A tip sheet based on survey data, aimed at helping small businesses successfully compete during the holiday shopping season, went out to trade media and bloggers covering small businesses.   

Executives from the three units gave interviews. OrangeSoda co-founder Derek Miner conducted an RMT focused on how small businesses could compete with large online retailers.

Small business author and marketer Melinda Emerson hosted a tweet chat with OrangeSoda CEO and co-founder Jay Bean in October. Gene Marks, small business author and blogger for The New York Times, hosted a November webinar for small business owners. Both events provided tips on maximizing holiday sales.

Emerson and Marks promoted the events on their social media channels, and the agency alerted journalists and bloggers covering small businesses.

The team drove stories through January with the survey data providing valuable baseline information for outlets covering holiday sales results.

Shapiro says the campaign was one of the company's most successful for Deluxe.

“Sales increased for all three business units compared to the 2011 holiday season, and the campaign likely contributed,” she adds.  

Nearly 5,500 stories (1.7 billion impressions) ran in outlets including USA Today and Los Angeles Times.  The tweet chat garnered 18.5 million impressions, nearly four times the goal. The webinar drew 81 participants. 

Shapiro says the team is devising storytelling plans for this year. 

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