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Blood Sacrifice

October 27, 2010

Below is an article we read in Deliver Magazine. Wow. I wish I could show you a picture! I will google the story to see if I can find one. GROSS! But the most important part of this article?! IT WORKED!


Blood Sacrifice

A European company mails bags of fake blood to prospective clients to emphasize its unrelenting work ethic.

By Paula Andruss

 Some marketing agencies promise to give blood, sweat and tears to clients. But Touch Branding has been intent on backing up that claim with a branding effort – including an edgy mail campaign – built around a bold message: “We’ll give our blood for good branding.”

                Prague-based marketing firm has pushed the idea in dramatic fashion, mailing real blood bags filled with fake blood to potential clients throughout the region around the European metropolis.

                Touch Branding creative director Martin Marusinec says the primary goals of the campaign, which launched in 2008 and continues today, is to introduce the firm as a branding agency to the creative directors of ad agencies in the Czech Republic and Slovakia.

                The mailer includes a letter with a short introduction to the company and a link to its website, which resembles a blood bag. Touch procured the authentic blood bags from a company that had a surplus of bags that were past their expiration dates. The fake blood was created from a recipe that company executives found online.

                “It was fully produced in-house with the cost of around $1 per piece,” Marusinec says.

                Marusinec says the promotion was devised as a mailer because the company was confident the piece would leave a lasting impact. “We felt that direct mail would work the best because once they unpacked the blood bags, there was no way they wouldn’t pay attention to the message we wanted to deliver,” he says. “It’s a powerful moment; we knew that the people we were targeting have seen a great idea of creative work throughout their professional careers, so if we wanted to excite them, we had to push the envelope.”

                At the campaign’s launch, Touch had the blood bags delivered directly to the creative directors of the top 10 Czech ad agencies. The company also mailed about 35 blood bags to smaller ad agencies and marketing companies, offering its branding knowledge and expertise. Touch, which represents major telecom, car and grocery brands, still sends out about 10 blood bags a year.

                “We believe that ad agencies have great branding projects but lack the internal capabilities to execute them well,” Marusinec says.

                The promotion’s positive response confirms that the campaign did just that. Marusinec says the agency has landed several medium-and large-scale branding projects through the targeted ad agencies. The campaign has also won several awards and received positive media attention worldwide; a bonus that Marusinec says gives his firm a long-term advantage over the competition.

                “It established the reputation of our agency and gave us the edge over other branding and design studios,” he says.

                That edge can only be achieved when marketers take risks and aren’t afraid to get creative with their direct mail campaigns, he adds.

                “Direct mail works when it brings a positive surprise t the recipient,” he says. “The Postal Service can deliver almost anything these days, so there’s no reason why your direct mail has to be yet another letter or plain brochure.”

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