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Archive for March, 2012

Author: Tim Hawthorne

Armed with an insatiable appetite for the unique, pretty, ugly, soft and cuddly, today’s kids want more toys, dolls, art kits, pillows, music and entertainment than ever. They don’t even have credit cards yet, but their voices and buying habits are already being heard – and heeded – in many households.

Answering the call is a group of manufacturers and marketers that have their fingers on the pulse of the children’s market. They work in a category that hasn’t historically ranked high on the DRTV charts despite the fact that it racks up millions of unit sales annually.

Targeted to toddlers, pre-teens, teenagers and their parents, fun and educational products often translate into successful retail, web and catalogue plays. That not only helps extend brand life – Kidz Bop, for example, is currently in its 14th version – but also ensures that the products reach multiple generations of children over time.

Market research firm Packaged Facts reports that the kids’ market reached over $21 billion in disposable income in 2010, and that families spent more than $115 billion on kids in key consumer areas, such as food, clothing, personal-care items, entertainment and reading materials.

The fact that kids have a lot to say about how that money is spent translates into major opportunities for marketers who get into the minds of these young buyers and figure out what they want.

Sometimes the answer lies in the simplest of ideas. Bees, ladybugs, dogs and unicorns took on new identities in 2003 when Doug Fowkes introduced the world to Pillow Pets. The folding stuffed animals have since morphed into an entire line of plush products that includes blankets, hats and even bedroom slippers. The concept of an animal-shaped pillow is simple enough, but it took Fowkes’ marketing genius and a boost from DRTV to turn these products into a real goldmine.

John Miller, a pioneer who helped build the kids’ category with Better Blocks, Floam, Bendaroos and Pixos, is current president and creative director at Hutton-Miller in Boca Raton, Fla. Miller says those early products – plus newer innovations like Happy Nappers™ and the Gyro Bowl™ — have all helped to drive the children’s category.

‘We realized early on that success in this category depended on how excited children got over the products, and whether they could get their parents to pick up the phone and place orders,’ says Miller. ‘We call it ‘pester power’ and it works very well with kids’ products.’

However, the children’s category can be fickle:  Kids sniff out inferior products quickly and jettison them to the bottom of the toy box. ‘The key is to produce and advertise quality products that truly excite the child,’ says Miller, who calls DRTV the ‘jumping-off point’ for all other distribution channels. ‘DRTV toy commercials have evolved from simply introducing products to creating categories that everyone jumps in on.’

Robert Yusim, president of Product Counsel DRTV in Winnipeg, helped bring to market DRTV products like Moon Sand, Moon Dough, Air Hogs and Vectron Wave. He says the most successful children’s DRTV shows center on fun creative treatments that include the appropriate balance of product demonstrations, fun displays and ‘magic transformations’ that ooh and ah the young audience. ‘Getting kids to react and then lobby their parents is the hardest part,’ says Yusim. ‘You can only do that through compelling creative.’

The momentum established by the many children’s products that left their mark on the DRTV world has opened doors for companies seeking a direct channel for their youth-oriented products.

Both infomercials and short-form commercials have proven themselves as effective ways to sell kids’ products and to create brand awareness and desire among a diminutive but influential component of today’s households.

Article Source: http://www.articlesbase.com/branding-articles/who-says-kids-products-dont-sell-on-drtv-5771232.html

About the Author

Author of over 200 published articles, Tim Hawthorne is Founder, Chairman and CEO of Hawthorne Direct, a full service DRTV and New Media ad agency founded in 1986. Since then, Hawthorne has produced or managed over 800 Direct Response TV campaigns for clients such as Apple, Braun, Nikon,Time-Life, Nissan, Oreck, Bose, and Feed the Children, Tim is a co-founder of the Electronic Retailing Association, has delivered over 100 speeches worldwide and is the author of the definitive DRTV book The Complete Guide to Infomercial Marketing. A cum laude graduate of Harvard, Tim was honored with the prestigious ‘Lifetime Achievement Award’ by the Electronic Retailing Association (ERA) in 2006.

Author: Jim Kleypas

If you closely examine the relationships involved in creating your marketing communications, you will discover that there are many facets involved. It is of the utmost importance that all parties are in step with each other in order to produce a top-quality product. There are some ‘early warning signs’ that the creative understanding between an Agency and its clients might be, at best, out of sync, and at worst, headed for a train wreck. A few of these points are listed out below – I hope you not only enjoy them but that they provide some serious insights for you:

*Never Explain Rejections – If you keep quiet, and keep your unspoken goals to yourself, you will always have the upper hand on your creative team because they will never even get close to satisfying you.

*Cram Every Product Into Every Ad – You know those creative types – always trying to push a design that leaves so much ‘unused’ space on any given page. Even though a strong presentation on a commanding feature or benefit might actually sell something, don’t let all that space on the page go unused.

*Don’t Bother To Follow Up With Research – You might learn that some creative approach other than your own actually worked and deserved to be repeated or expanded to other product lines – but you would have to give up some control over the creative process and that would never do.

*Nit-Pick – There is nothing – and never will be anything – that cannot be criticized and ‘improved’ by you or your advertising committee. Even though your creative team has worked weeks to perfect a concept, it can always be torn down.

*Never, Repeat Never, Praise Good Work ­– Always keep the creative team on its toes by not telling them they have done good work. After all, you just might get more of the same.

These points were originally written to try to provide guidance to some young, but inexperienced, Account Executives on the Agency side of the business.  They have been in my file, and in the back of my mind, for over thirty years and I am still amazed at the timeless wisdom they represent.  If nothing else, they are a reminder that any successful creative problem solving can only be achieved if the whole team is rowing in the same direction.  If, in the execution of your marketing communications program, you begin to sense that something might be out of sync on the creative side of things, solve that problem first – then tackle the bigger creative issues.   Early warning signs might start small but they will quickly mushroom to proportions that can completely derail a creative effort.

Article Source: http://www.articlesbase.com/branding-articles/creativity-killers-early-warning-signs-5737494.html

About the Author

Clients who work with Jim Kleypas on their communications challenges enjoy the advantage of a thoroughly professional, highly experienced team leader. A former corporate ad manager, Jim entered the agency business as an account executive and moved up through the ranks to the position of agency principal and president. Along the way, he repeatedly demonstrated a keen sense for understanding client needs and how to manage his team to produce cost-effective, high-impact solutions.

Jim’s years of experience on both sides of the client-agency relationship gives him a broad perspective of both client needs and innovative marketing strategies. From client to client, Jim demonstrates a consistent ability to increase market share while remaining sensitive to budget guidelines and each client’s unique personality. When it comes to supervision of an agency’s relationship with a client, executives nationwide know they can rely on Jim Kleypas to deliver success-oriented results.

Author: Carol Gracias

The modes of communication and the methods of incorporating the business have gone radical changes with the passage of time. Being a professional, your credible attitude ensures the continuing success of a business house and as well to maintain your customers and clients loyalty. Apart of providing better products and services, maintaining a friendly relationship with the clients becomes so necessary today. You can easily maintain a booming relationship with your clients using a compliment slip. This indispensable element of communication has become the first choice of any businesses which are keen in making perfect communication and strong relationship with their clients.

Compliment slip printing is done on paper that comes with similar information to that of any letterhead or visiting card etc such as name of the contact person, address and salutation etc. It needs to put some space for few lines similarly like hand written message. The compliment slips are used to express a variety of expression making your message very much personalized so that the receiver easily can feel the sense including in it.

Having a complete knowledge of the purpose of compliment slips is necessary in taking correct decision for its printing. You need to check the quality of the paper, color, fonts and backgrounds etc that you are going to use in your compliment slip. And even when writing the personal note words must be selected in accordance with the purpose, so it does not make the recipient feel confused. The size of the slips can vary as per the requirement of user. They are as small as a visitor card, or it can be a large sheet depending on requirement. These slips can also be used as ‘thank you note’ or can be used as an ‘acknowledgment’ or can be used to show ‘appreciation’. A well designed compliment slip remains for long time in the memory of the receiver. Therefore, it becomes essential to be printed in an artistic manner to serve their purpose and express all emotions.

Benefits of Compliments Slips:

•    The compliment slips are the best way to express your gratitude, apologize for some sorts of mistake or to say a warm ‘Thank You’ to your clients or business associates.

•    Compliment slip printing is the prerequisite for all those businesses who harvest a desire to ensure perfect communication and relation with their prospective customers.

•    Take the benefits of the printing companies that offer free compliment slip printing facilities to attract their target customers. These printing companies are confident of their superior services and innovative ideas.

•    A compliment slip contains your business logo, personal message and address to allow people to connect with your business with ease.

Article Source: http://www.articlesbase.com/printing-articles/compliments-slips-a-success-business-tool-5721910.html

About the Author

Carol is an expert article author, sharing the information about compliment slips and online printing through article, news, press release and blogs. For more information on print product and online printing visit our website.

Listen here to our latest radio interview on 3/2/2012. Jim and Adam talk about landing pages and their importance in email marketing.