How a Fully Integrated B2B Marketing Campaign Delivered Results
By Austin LaRoche, ATAK Interactive CEO
Last September, Anderson & Vreeland prepared for their largest trade show of the year, LabelExpo Americas 2016. Inside their booth was some of the most cutting edge equipment in flexographic printing – the Flint nyloflex Xpress, the Xeikon ThermoflexX, and the AV Flexologic SAMM 800.
But the highlight for the company was the “Great Packaging Starts with a Great Workflow” exhibition. For months leading up to LabelExpo, A&V had unveiled an optimal printing process that began with the Hybrid Packz software, moved to GMG for color precision, and used the Screen Truepress Jet L350UV to print pristine and vibrant labels with a rapid turnaround. To showcase the workflow, the company partnered with Chicago’s Church Street Brewery to re-design the label for their seasonal Helles Bock and print the new label through this new process.
Inside the LabelExpo booth were bottles of freshly brewed and delicious Helles Bock for prospects to enjoy while they learned how the label on the beer they were drinking was developed.
It was the culmination of a five month integrated marketing campaign led by ATAK Interactive that would help the company sell 20% more product than they had at the previous LabelExpo.
Here’s how we built, executed, and delivered this successful campaign from start to finish.
Step One: Strategic Partnerships
The specialists at Anderson & Vreeland created its most efficient workflow using products from Hybrid, GMG, and Screen. Each business understood that to help move products, they needed to engage in a partnership that would highlight a process that was optimal for their equipment.
The next step was finding a brewery to partner with on the project. ATAK found the Church Street Brewery, an up-and-coming craft beer company based in the Chicago suburbs. Lucky for everyone involved, they were in need of a label.
Here’s an overview of each partner:
Digital pre-press workflow management solutions
Color management solutions and proofing software
Screen Truepress L350UV
Digital printing press for short- to medium-run label production
Church Street Brewing Every year, Church Street brewing produces an exclusive and limited anniversary beer. Called “Special Helles”. ATAK saw a great opportunity to design an eye-catching label to showcase the high-quality, short run capabilities of the software and digital press workflow.
Step Two: Campaign Creative
Before we could print anything, we needed a new label design.
Knowing the malty, robust quality of the Helles Bock style, ATAK’s Art Director and creative team took the theme of “Special Helles” and ran, creating an indulgent and playful original illustration for the label. Metallic accents provided an opportunity to further showcase the precision and quality of printing available with Anderson & Vreeland’s workflow expertise.
Developing a Core Message
ATAK Interactive developed a messaging and campaign plan that would leverage this campaign for the best possible results, by using both print and digital marketing channels to communicate this message and value.
Integrated Marketing Campaign: Great Packaging Starts With a Great Workflow
The commercial printing industry is full of companies who are always looking to optimize their efficiency. Anderson & Vreeland’s goal was to share the message that “Great Packaging Starts with a Great Workflow.”
This message is the core of what makes Anderson & Vreeland so influential in the flexographic printing industry. They have deep knowledge spanning the entire print process, and help their clients envision their entire printing workflow from start to finish, with the expertise to ensure it works exactly as intended. Their access to suppliers and knowledge of the software and equipment they provide is unparalleled.
Publishing a Whitepaper Content Series
Every step of the label design process was documented in a whitepaper, to be released in three phases over Summer 2016 to build up the campaign and expand its reach.
This whitepaper was accompanied by print collateral and a custom URL directing readers to a custom landing page on the Anderson & Vreeland website at futureoflabels.com, where they could access more information about the campaign by filling out a form that directly integrated with Anderson & Vreeland’s Salesforce CRM.
Each of these elements work together to create a marketing funnel, attracting leads to Anderson & Vreeland’s website. ATAK Interactive’s next move was to build promotions to attract prospects to the funnel campaign. LabelExpo 2016 was the perfect end-cap for this project, a popular industry event to make the brand shine.
Editorial + Print Advertising
In order to increase awareness and curiosity about having the workflow demonstrated on the LabelExpo show floor, we implemented an outreach campaign.
For this campaign, Anderson & Vreeland pinpointed Flexo Magazine and Label and Narrow Web magazines, the most influential publications in the flexographic printing industry.
Through August and September 2016, full-page print ads and belly band cover wrap ads were placed in these publications, including the issue of Flexo Magazine distributed at the LabelExpo event.
To support the A&V staff on the show floor, and provide a great take-home for booth visitors to show to management and colleagues, ATAK and Anderson & Vreeland developed a trifold brochure explaining the design, workflow, printing, and sales process to potential new customers. This brochure would be handed to booth visitors as they were watching the beer labels come off the printing press setup in the booth.
Step Three: Orchestrating an IMC Campaign
Executing an Integrated Marketing Campaign spanning across marketing channels throughout the year takes a project coordinator in touch with all parties to collect assets, execute strategy, and measure the results. ATAK’s project managers are experienced with running integrated marketing campaigns, from concept to execution, and this was no different.
To keep the campaign execution as painless as possible, Basecamp and Dropbox were used to organize assets, delegate roles, and organize deadlines.
The campaign was deployed in concert with Anderson & Vreeland, GMG Color, Screen, Hybrid Software, and Church Street Brewing. Proactive campaign management meant partners were always in the loop on the campaign’s status, and able to deploy the campaign to their own audiences and grow our reach.
Anderson & Vreeland began a content marketing campaign highlighting the capabilities of a digital equipment workflow with a series of blog posts in June, July, and August. Each of these was distributed in email and social media marketing, and boosted to new prospects with paid social media advertising.
- Anderson & Vreeland and ATAK Interactive pitched the campaign concept to partners Hybrid Software, GMG Color Management, and Screen, all of whom were preparing their marketing for Label Expo.
- Identified a brewery to be campaign partners for Label Expo. Church Street Brewing had the right schedule and marketing needs to partner up.
- ATAK’s art department began developing the illustration for the label, and mocking up the first round of design.
- The label design for Church Street Brewing’s Special Hell was approved by all partners, and finalized for printing at Label Expo.
- Once finalized, ATAK’s art department collected visual assets from campaign partners to use in the integrated marketing creative.
- Fine-tuning label design for metallic printing with campaign partners
- Campaign landing page was designed, developed and shipped by ATAK’s web team: futureoflabels.com
- The trifold brochure to be distributed at Label Expo was designed, and served dual purpose as a digital graphic or landing pages and social media.
- The first whitepaper, “Chasing the Three-Foot Effect”, was completed. This was presented in a blog post and email marketing
- The second whitepaper, “Chasing the Three-Foot Effect: Episode Two”, was completed. This was also presented in a blog post and through email marketing.
- The final whitepaper in the “Chasing the Three-Foot Effect” series is released. It is presented in a blog post and through email marketing.
- The August issues of Flexo Magazine and Label and Narrow Web contain a full-page Workflow ad, linking to the landing page.
- The three whitepapers are consolidated into a single document in preparation for Label Expo, and made available in the Future of Labels landing page.
- Flexo Magazine’s September 2016 belly band advertisement promoting workflow whitepaper, and full-page interior ad.
- The run-up to Label Expo meant a heavier email promotion schedule:
- Pre-Expo Email and Blog Post: Revving Up for Label Expo
- Live from Label Expo Blog post, email, and live video.
- After Label Expo, a recap blog post tied up loose ends and showed the fruits of all of the work put into the campaign, including video of the labels being printed on the show floor.
Step Four: Show Time at LabelExpo
At LabelExpo 2016, the campaign was poised to make a splash. The press workflow was moved in and ran flawlessly for the show’s 3-day run. This meant the eye-catching illustrated labels were being printed live on the show floor, in front of visitors. Anderson & Vreeland’s sales team were able to hand labeled beer bottles to booth visitors as they came off the press, after walking the prospect through the steps of the digital printing workflow on display.
To increase interest and foot traffic during the show, Anderson & Vreeland hosted a happy hour event serving bottles of Special Helles, and hosted on-site product demos with the workflow A&V built using Hybrid, GMG, and Screen’s products.
This was further capitalized with a live stream running the duration of the show, showing audio and video of activity from the booth and product demonstrations.
Anderson & Vreeland had one of the best performances in their trade show history, making more sales on-site, and collecting more leads to contact in the coming weeks. One sale made on the floor became a continuing marketing opportunity in the form of a case study.
This momentum led to the opportunity to continue this campaign through the end of 2016, with ongoing supporting content, print advertising, and future trade show strategy.
This strong performance also reinforced the relationships built between Anderson & Vreeland and the campaign partners, providing opportunities for bigger, more ambitious cross-promotional partnerships in the future.
In a B2B industry that doesn’t embrace digital marketing strategies as readily as others, the strategies used in Anderson & Vreeland’s campaign made a big impact on customers and competitors alike. ATAK was able to position A&V head and shoulders above the rest with a carefully managed campaign and message.
Thanks to a comprehensive marketing partnership approach, ATAK Interactive and Anderson & Vreeland were able to leverage a unique trade show concept into a business -to-business marketing success case.
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