An analysis of printed catalogues – Part 2: Value Adds, Freemiums, Celeb Sponsors, Seasonal Triggers

For a preamble as to where I came across this conglomerate of printed Father’s Day catalogues and why I bothered to photograph them, please see my previous post way back in 2012.

Unless you’re religious about unsubscribing and reducing paper use for environmental reasons then I’m sure you’re quite familiar with these letterbox fillers too.

I found it funny when less than 2 minutes after publishing “Part 1: Pricing” I sat next to a lady reading a catalogue that showed this perfect example of two pricing methods in one – wholedollar and different product/same price… So as a PostScript to the last installment, please enjoy:

Kristen Obaid marketing blog pricing post

Wholedollar pricing, for different products – Kmart

And now here are my thoughts on some other popular techniques being used in catalogue marketing “at the moment” (assuming creative and strategy hasn’t changed drastically since the Father’s Day trigger dates = yes, I’m still referring to that superlarge bushel of paper.)

The Value Add

Done well by Coles, with:
– Feed your family for under $10
– Bottle of wine to match your meal (coupon)
– Recipes
– Smartphone app (more on this another time)

Catalogue - Coles, recipe and offer

Catalogue – Coles, recipe and offer

Woolworths also has a take on The Value Add showing:
– Mexican meal theme inspiration
– Shopping list for ingredients
– Simple instructions including cooking times in the recipe

Catalogue - Woolworths recipe and shopping list

Catalogue – Woolworths recipe and shopping list

Complimentary gifts

Actual tangible freemiums (meaning something between a premium and bonus gift – but a term that doesn’t devalue or taint the giveaway quite like the word “free” does) are demonstrated by BWS with their hip flask or wine carafe.

I like the way the freebie is largely signified using a simple plus+ symbol creative, keeping the long (often distracting) terms and conditions separate visually:

Catalogue - BWS neat font, simple freebie using plus symbol

Catalogue – BWS neat font, simple freebie using plus symbol


Celebrity endorsement

One of the oldest sales ploys, celebrity endorsement happened even in the gladiator pits of ancient Rome. Rumour has it that director Ridley Scott was going to put a scene about it in Gladiator, but thought the audience wouldn’t get the reference (or worse, would think he was a sell out for real).

Used less often in print than TV, the tactic is shown here with Big W‘s portrayal of training personality Michelle Bridges as summer fitness motivation, including her timely “get ready for summer” message call out:

Catalogue - Big W, Michelle Bridges endorsed sports gear

Catalogue – Big W, Michelle Bridges endorsed sports gear

Falling under both seasonal and celebrity endorsement, BigW had Michelle Bridges sponsor the whole sports section – which covered everything from drink bottles to workout clothes and trampolines.

It was great timing for the “must get bikini ready” triggering thought process many of us experience after being forced into a skirt or shorts on the first warm-aired blue-skyed day after winter.

Another endorsement example, sportsman sponsorship is displayed here by Rebel Sport featuring Michael Clarke in their cricket season opening catalogue:

Rebel Sport - using celebrity endorsement, Michael Clarke

Rebel Sport – using celebrity endorsement, Michael Clarke

And again here by SportsScene for cricket season, but this time using a different sports celebrity endorser (including a quote from each cricketer) for each different cricket bat range:

Catalogue Marketing Strategy - SportScene

SportsScene – a different celebrity endorser for each cricket bat type

Rebel Sport’s neat catalogue provided additional information inside that wasn’t strictly necessary so I also considered it a value add, helpful for those about to make a serious purchase.

This is one way print can help address “showrooming” – if your catalogue and your bricks and mortar staff can give unexpected advice you may inspire loyalty (aka guilt) in the customer by demonstrating how a quality product and personalised service can be even more compelling than price alone.

Catalogue - Rebel Sport neatly laid out

Catalogue – Rebel Sport neatly laid out

Rounding up the celebrity sponsorship dot point, I think Australia has a long way to go in this regard – we’re not yet using our known “faces” as effectively as we could in day to day advertising. We need more socially savvy agencies like the US of A based SponsorHub, who help with choosing celebrities for endorsements based on their social media accounts.

Next up:

Seasonal theming

Before we had enough good data for trigger marketing (or enough of a risk taking sense of humour to resort to funny guerilla tactics like the goldfish-on-the-doorstep trick) tracking and preempting the seasonal purchases made by our niche target market was possibly the best tool we marketers had.

Evidentially it’s still “big” in print. These are some of the seasonal themes in the two week period I catalogued.

It appears that straight after Father’s Day ’tis the season to play cricket, get fit, watch sports on TV, spring clean, party and garden.

1) Father’s Day
Just prior to Father’s Day on September 2 both Myer and Dick Smith went for the Dad “type” theme:

Catalogue - Myer, who's your Daddy Father's Day

Catalogue – Myer, who’s your Daddy Father’s Day

Myer: Who’s your Daddy-O?
Lord Latte, Gizmo Daddy-O, Chillin’ Dad or Cool Daddy

Catalogue - Dick Smith nice neat font, whole prices, Father's Day copy

Marketing strategy print advertising – Dick Smith

Dick Smith: Which camera
For the Action Man, for the Party Guy

2) Sports watching
As well as the more participatory “Cricket” and “Get fit for summer” themes briefly alluded to under celebrity sponsorship, the sports theme is obviously huge during September.

Radio Rentals, CocaCola and Weetbix all went nuts with the AFL grand final/sports watching theme:

InStore Marketing Strategy - Woolworths, Weetbix Sports AFL

InStore Marketing Strategy – Woolworths, Weetbix Sports AFL

InStore Marketing Strategy - Woolworths AFL sports theme

InStore Marketing Strategy – Woolworths AFL sports theme

(Admission, the themes were reflected in the catalogues but I think this instore printed POS at Woolworths shows the depth of focus oh-so-well)

3) Spring means…
Cheap as Chips, Mitre10, Serenity Nursery all believe Spring means gardening, and Spotlight, Target and Fantastic Furniture believe Spring means party season as per the pages shown back in Part 1.

Solomon’s Flooring can specifically help you get ready for party season by spring cleaning and party proofing with mess defying surfaces.

This is one of my favourite catalogues, great look and colours and again well timed for the thought processes we go through in September:

Catalogue Marketing Strategy - Solomons Flooring

Solomons Flooring – on season with “Super Spring Savings”, bright and flowery

Catalogue Marketing Strategy - Solomons Flooring 2

Solomons Flooring – bright colours, sleek layout, great benefits “mess-defying” “coastal” “party proof”… also into party season early

Spartan info

In the same bunch of unaddressed mail I also noticed some wonderful entertainment industry ads that cut out a lot of info corporate marketers might consider necessary (but which truly isn’t).

These two examples for The Incredible Kicks and the Vanguard Cinema don’t even include show times.

Because if you’re interested in a show you’ll surely visit the website to find out more and you’ll plan around the event time regardless:

Print advertising for music - date and venue, no useless info like times

Print advertising for music – date and venue only, no useless info like times

Print advertising - simple, event and dates for The Vanguard Cinema

Print advertising – simple, event and dates only for The Vanguard Cinema

Have to say, can’t wait for the Return of Star Wars Burlesque.

Now to wrap it up with:

Miscellaneous commentary

1) Same store, same week but very different catalogue look and feel (= different agencies?)
You can tell there’s a marked difference between the creative teams looking after Myer’s sleek and inspirational “Fashion” catalogue, compared to their day to day product based catalogue.

The fashion catalogue is colourful and uncluttered:

Catalogue - Myer Fashion - different design, sleek2

Catalogue – Myer Fashion – different design, sleek2

Catalogue - Myer Fashion - different design, sleek

Catalogue – Myer Fashion – different design, sleek

Whereas the “other” Myer catalogue that arrived within the same three day period looked fifty shades of sterile all the way through (not just on this kitchen appliance page):

Catalogue Marketing Strategies - Myer

Myer catalogue – complicated pricing inc cashbacks and savings

2)Save-atar on Spendora
This catalogue deserves a very special mention for reaching unobtainium levels of uniqueness.

It appears that all the local business owners painted themselves blue, added elf ears, and impersonated Avatar characters for this local area marketing catalogue photoshoot.

How can you go past this?

Catalogue - Local businesses as Avatars - Save-atar

Catalogue – Local businesses as Avatars – Save-atar

Catalogue - Local businesses as Avatars - Spendora

Catalogue – Local businesses as Avatars – Spendora

Without any further ado, that wraps up my late August/early September 2012 paperbased marketing review.

Now perhaps I’ll do a Valentine’s Day eDM review and write about it at Christmas.

~Kristen Obaid

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