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  2. MOST COMMON INDUSTRIES • Consumer Package Goods • Quick Serve Restaurant • Insurance • Banking/Credit Unions • Financials Services • Agriculture/Farm • Sports Teams (Pro or College) • Zoo • Pets • Healthcare • Casino • Hotel • Government • Aviation • Energy • Fire Safety

  3. CUSTOMER APPLICATIONS B2C • Brand Identity • POS • Gift with Purchase • Trial Offer • Collectable • Mascot • Cause Promotion • Product Packaging • Holiday Promotion B2B • Trade Show Traffic Builder • Brand Identity • Direct Mail to Get Appts • Safety Program • Employee Recognition • Sales Recognition • Product Packaging • Customer Gifts • Incentive Trip or Meeting Promotion Theme

  4. AMERICA’S FAVORITE AD ICONS • M&M Talking Candies • Seatbelt Dummies • Mr. Clean • Tony the Tiger • Michelin Man • California Raisins • Charlie the Tuna • Smokey Bear • Mr. Peanut • Kool-Aid Pitcher

  5. WHO CAN USE CHARACTER MARKETING • An established companycan use characters to expand awareness into new audiences, create better and more direct communication with existing customers and bring to life aspects of their business that their audiences are not yet aware of. • A new companythat is just establishing itself can most precisely communication who they are, what they do and how they do it through the qualities and actions of a character.

  6. WHO BUYS PLUSH? • Nearly 80% of consumers buy plush to give as a gift. • A telephone survey among 1,000 U.S. households found that about one-fifth of all householdspurchased a plush, stuffed or beanbag toy in the past year. • Households under 45 years of age are the prime market for plush, while households with childrenpresent are twice as likely to buy plush than single person or two-person homes.

  7. CONSUMERS CONNECT EMOTIONALLY • Effective brand characters can't simply mirror the consumer. This cardinal sin is what Altschul says caused the downfall of the hip-hop Colonel Sanders, who was designed to engage KFC'S "street" clientele, and the modernized Betty Crocker who was a digital hybrid of multiple women who represent the brand's target audience. • People "connect emotionally with characters whose struggles are familiar to them, not with characters who superficially look or act like them," says Altschul. A look at long-reining beloved characters proves his point: Tony the Tiger has an oversized ego, the Maytag repairman is a lonely perfectionist and Sonny from Cocoa Puffs teeters on the brink of insanity.

  8. WHY CHARACTER MARKETING? Character Branding is Nothing New… For thousands of years, mankind has been branding its most deeply held beliefs with characters. They were personified in the form of characters to make them understandable and to reach the greatest number of people. By personifying these things it not only puts a face to it, unlike a logo, it brings it to life enabling us to have a relationship with it. That’s the benefit of communicating to an audience with character branding. These days you need to go beyond advertising, you have to create a relationship with your audience. A logo can’t do it. If a picture is worth a thousand words, the true character for your brand is worth millions.

  9. CHARACTER MARKETING WILL • Create media exposure and excitement, • Generate goodwill for the brand, • Act as an ambassador for the brand by providing a voice for the company's social conscience, • Provide a rallying icon for community identification (for example, baseball fans doing the tomahawk chop), • Provide tie-in identification at point-of-sale (the mascot boldly featured on packaging, in-store merchandising, trucks and T-shirts), and sell products. The appeal is normally broad from children, to parents, to media

  10. BENEFITS OF CHARACTER MARKETING • The Advertising Recall FactorGreat performing ad campaigns have proven that recall will help the ad work even long after it has been seen or heard. • Our favorite ads with high recall Where's the beef? Aflac Duck Yo Quiero Taco Bell Great Taste Less Filling Geico Gecko • The importance of getting noticedThe average person is exposed to more than 3000 ads per day, If your ads go unnoticed, then you are simply wasting your advertising dollars.

  11. WHY PLUSH STORY – CAN YOU SPARE SOME TIMESource: The Wall Street Journal, January 26, 2004 The average U.S. consumer listens to 20 hours of radio/week; 19 hours of cable and satellite TV/week; 15 hours of broadcast TV/week; 3 hours/week of recorded music, newspaper reading and Internet surfing; and 2 hours/week reading magazines and books. People are sleeping less, and (no surprise) given the ubiquity of cell phones, talking on the phone more. Our cable company, Comcast, just added an "On Demand" service that offers free downloaded movies and shows, whenever you want. All this makes it much more difficult and expensive for advertisers to reach their target demographics. What's an advertiser to do to attract attention?

  12. AFLAC STORY • According to Aflac Inc., “The duck has done more for the life and disability insurer's brand recognition in less than five years than most advertising symbols have done for their brand over decades.” • Launched in January 2000, the national advertising campaign featuring the duck quacking, "AFLAAAAC," produced a significant increase in Aflac's name recognition--from 12% to more than 90%, according to Aflac. • Coke Brand has a 95% name recognition • Sales grew from a rate of 10% growth per year to 24% growth per year after introducing the duck

  13. GEICO STORY • GEICO’s website explains the origin of the Gecko. "Because the name 'GEICO' was often mispronounced, 'GEICO' became 'gecko,' and a quick doodle of a gecko appeared. The agency knew how powerful animals are in the world of advertising and a full illustration followed. The English voice that the gecko uses became another distinguishing factor. Even when the gecko becomes annoyed with people calling him at home on the phone by mistake when they are trying to reach GEICO, he always maintains his decorum in a very proper English tone."

  14. GEICO STORY (continued) • The GEICO Gecko has become a force to be reckoned with in the advertising world and was voted America's favorite advertising icon in 2005. Our small green friend has traveled the country spreading the good news about GEICO and has captivated audiences of all ages. • When GEICO started with us, they were getting 1 or 2 million new customers and now they've had 3 million new customers last year, they're the fastest growing car insurance company, and now I don't think it's revealing too much to say they spend in the hundreds of millions of dollars…because it pays like crazy.

  15. WHAT OTHERS HAVE DONE • PepsiCo wanted to differentiate its Mug Root Beer from competing products. It called on David Altschul, the co-founder of a small marketing firm called Character in Portland, Ore., who helped create a mysterious bulldog to spice up Mug’s soda cans. • General Mills decided to reinvigorate Buzz, the Honey Nut Cheerios bee. Character was hired to give him a makeover. • Pepperidge Farm committed to sprucing up its Cheddar goldfish icon, the brand experts at Character named him Finn, shifted his sunglasses to the top of his head, and moved him into a colorful community. His school, as seen on TV ads launched in January, now includes Gilbert, a shy pretzel goldfish; Brooke, a smart Parmesan fish; and a daredevil XTreme, from the Flavor Blasted line of Goldfish.

  16. IT’S ALL AROUND US • Most consumers grew up with the characters and associate them with their brand. But mascot and character marketing experienced a period of decline in the 1980s as ad executives and brand managers sought other creative and outlandish means of promoting their brands. But the mascot is back -- and not just on cereal shelves. • Sports teams have shown the marketing world that mascots and characters are highly effective in creating awareness, building loyalty and most importantly, selling tickets; And the rest of the marketing world is taking note. The San Diego Chicken made the sports mascot big news. Other sports teams have followed suit.

  17. WHY PLUSH STORY – THE VALUE • Most small businesses have never considered the value of a character or mascot in their marketing effort. But they can be affordable and, if applied in the correct fashion, highly effective. • While the brand strategy defines the message and mission of the brand, which may be a company, product or service, and how it should be perceived, the brand identity translates the strategic vision into a consistent image. A tangible concept that can be accessed through the brand name, the corporate identity and the verbal positioning. • Transported by an outstanding corporate design, an integrated brand identity system enables companies and their products to project their level of quality, reliability and value in the market in a very influential way.

  18. CHARACTER DEVELOPMENT Creating character is not about making stuff up But discovering the story inherent in the brand. A Brand Character or Icon can be properly Developed to have that emotional connection. Here’s how: • Know its story. • Know its flaws, vulnerabilities, and sources of conflict (preferably self-inflicted). • Connect the character to the brand in a deep, intrinsic way. • Know what human truth is revealed throughout the story that audiences can relate to. • Know whom the Icon represents and have that representation be one of entertainment triumphs and failures.

  19. CASE STUDY 1of 12 HOTEL TRADE SHOW • Objective: Engage tradeshow visitors in conversations • Plan: Develop response cards and games that change peoples states to a fun environment. • Result: 100% of all visitors filled out interest card and experienced fun atmosphere with resort staff. Plush toys used in themes 3 years. • Billings: $15,000 plus Toss Your Cookies 8” Gingerbread Man Seal the Deal 9” Seal

  20. CASE STUDY 2 of 12 HEALTH CARE INSURANCE • Objective: Build Brand awareness in community as company expands. • Plan: Attend community health fairs and have walk-around mascot play games and hand out toys. 6" Orange Bear HealthEase Result: Was one of the fastest growing health organizations in the country. Billings: 3yrs$100,000 plus 6" Yellow Staywell Dog 6" Blue Bear WellCare

  21. CASE STUDY 3 of 12RETAIL • Result: 100% of all Bears were sold and product sales and also helped sales of T-Shirts. • Billings: $100,000 plus • Objective: Increase retail sales in military bases. • Plan: Plush Bears with PT uniform and dog tags branded with each unit of military.

  22. CASE STUDY 4 of 12 PRODUCT PACKAGING • Objective: Create a product sample kit for cat medicine to increase product trials. • Plan: Develop plush mouse toy with velcro opening to hold sample of medicine. Result: Fulfilling 2,000 samples per month. Billings: $50,000 plus

  23. CASE STUDY 5 of 12 EDUCATION • Objective: Educate New Parents on Child Care • Plan: Include Frog & Lamb Puppets into New Parent Packages. Result: Both Puppets placed in 500,000 new parent packages. Billings: $1,000,000 plus

  24. CASE STUDY 6 OF 12 HOLIDAY GIFT WITH PURCHASE Objective: Increase sales of a dozen donuts product during holiday season when sales were slow due to other treat options consumers buy at this time of the year Plan: Plush Bears were on the rise for all genders. Offer gift with purchase for the consumer. The consumer gets the bear and a donation is made to charity Result: 100% of all Bears were sold and product sales were up during holiday season Billings: $100,000 plus

  25. CASE STUDY 7 OF 12 COLLECTIBLE REDEMPTION Result: 100% of all displays were placed and sales exceeded all expectations Billings: $500,000 plus Objective: Get End Isle Display in Key Accounts. With end isle sales will increase 300%. Kids will ask for more sack product to get the proof of purchases needed to order the animals Plan: Plush Bears were on the rise for all genders. Offer gift to store managers as part of the display for end isle display location in store. Consumer could get either animal for a reasonable price.

  26. CASE STUDY 8 OF 12 POS END AISLE DISPLAY Objective: Get End Isle Display in Key Accounts Plan: Plush Bears were on the rise for all genders. Offer gift to store managers as part of the display for end isle display location in store Result: 100% of all displays were placed and sales exceeded all expectations Billings: $50,000 plus

  27. Case Study 9 of 12BRAND CHARACTER RESTURANT • Objective: become premier Chicken Quick Serve Restaurant • Plan: Develop Plush Cow Character who can’t spell lobby to eat more chicken Result: Plush Cow in very happy meal, bowl game, and company sponsored event. Billings: Annual $1,000,000 plus

  28. Case Study 10 of 12 Result: 132 toys given out in 6 hours 30 prospects registered on website in 1 week 20% Increase in Website Hits in 1 week 140% Increase in Website Visits in 1 week Billings: $19,000 in 60 days Objective: To gain exposure and recognition at 400 attendee tradeshow. Plan: Handout teddy bears with imprinted t-shirt and “Interactive” ToyTag™ with an instant win prize at registration.

  29. Case Study 11 of 12 • Objective: Merchandise famous story character. • Plan: Sell puppets in retail theatre gift shop. Result: Ship 1,000 puppets per month to U.K., NY, LV, & Australia. Billings: Annual $50,000 plus

  30. Case Study 12 of 12 • Objective: Fire Department Thank you for Order. • Plan: Every order of $100 receives a plush fire toy. Result: Increased averaged order amount. Billings: Annual $30,000 plus

  31. NEXT STEPS • Confirm Business Objectives • Prepare Proposal • Present New Ideas • Set-Up Follow-up Meeting