Intelligence Awards 2004: Retail & Home Shopping/B2B


Project: CACI and Aga-Rayburn Turn Up The Heat

Company: CACI

Client: Aga-Rayburn


Project: Project Bird

Company: CMS

Client: Unilever


Project: Vodafone Accelerator

Company: Inbox Media

Client: Vodafone


Project: BT Business Plan Review Mailing

Company: Ogilvy One Worldwide

Client: BT

HIGHLY COMMENDED The launch of Aga's first electric oven was an event worth shouting about, but the venerable cookware brand found itself facing a two-fold challenge last year - not only to promote the launch but also to increase its annual sales.

In the event, it came up with a campaign that really did turn up the heat to produce some hot results.

Aga needed to reach 150,000 carefully targeted prospects nationwide with a direct mail campaign that would create awareness of the new product, generate interest and enquiries, and, ultimately, increase sales.

Tracking down these prospects was the first challenge. Its data partner CACI first profiled existing Aga customers to identify key characteristics, then refined these selections with its lifestage indicator PeopleUK. Finally, it further refined the geographic selections to find out which households had a mains gas supply and were also within store catchment areas.

Results were compared with the same period the previous year, the six-week period prior to the campaign, and with its autumn direct mail campaign.

The differences were outstanding. Overall uplift of response was double that of previous campaigns; the number of information packs sent out nearly trebled; telephone calls were up 40 per cent on the same period the previous year, and Aga was set to achieve 10 per cent of its sales targets by the end of the first half of the year. As a result, sales were up 114 per cent year on year.


To encourage retailers to stock its frozen convenience foods and enhance recognition of its recent rebranding, Unilever subsidiary Birds Eye Walls used its data to vary the text and colour pictures in this direct mail campaign.

The strategy was developed by direct marketing agency Channel Marketing Solutions and the mailers were implemented by direct production house SR Communications, which used variable data imaging technology.

Based on an analysis of which products sold best in each store, selected retailers were sent one of 15,000 different mail packs featuring images and products that were individually tailored to the preferences of that store's shoppers. A personalised letter featured images of the products recommended in the text. These letters also encouraged the retailer to sign up for discounts.

Follow-up telesales by CMS encouraged retailer take-up and a tracking of responses was used for a second wave of personalised mailings. Birds Eye achieved a significant increase of active response levels .

In addition, the exercise has improved telesales efficiency. CMS regularly telephones and questions buyers, and encourages them to buy Birds Eye products that they do not currently stock, but are popular locally.

The use of variable colour images and the individualised recommendations in the copy also made it easier for the retailer to identify which products the telemarketer was talking about, thereby cutting the length of calls.


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