PolyGram program targets P&I managers

Firing up the troops with premiums is one thing; but firing up those in charge of the troops by offering them premiums from the same source is something else again.But that's what PolyGram Special Projects has done with The M.A.P. Music...

Firing up the troops with premiums is one thing; but firing up those in charge of the troops by offering them premiums from the same source is something else again.

But that’s what PolyGram Special Projects has done with The M.A.P. Music and Promotions, a program that provides PolyGram products to the managers of premiums and incentives schemes with the aim of getting them to use the multinational company’s cds and tapes.

Both David Shelton, vice-president, group director, at the Cundari Group, and Maria Pietrunti, special projects manager at PolyGram, caution, however, the program is just beginning to find its feet after getting started late last year.

To promote the program, says Shelton, whose agency worked with the music company to develop The M.A.P., PolyGram used a response card bound into a trade paper at a premiums and incentives show in Toronto last August.

To qualify for the program, would-be recipients had to supply information on such things as the types of products they promote; their target age group; their premium program’s average budget; and such obvious corporate information as name, address, job title and company name.

M.A.P. binder

Qualified recipients received The M.A.P. binder – which shows incentive managers how they might use PolyGram products to drive sales, recognize achievement or as prizes in contests and sweepstakes – and a newsletter that is mailed out four to six times a year.

‘When it comes to music premiums, it can be everything your audience dreamed of, and we’ll deliver it under your corporate or brand banner,’ The M.A.P. says.

‘Open with a custom package,’ it says. ‘Dazzle them with a logo or icon printed on an actual cd disk. Build a database or keep them coming back for more with in-pack coupons, rebates or sweepstakes entries.’

Included in The M.A.P. binder are such things as facts and figures on the size and scope of the music industry in Canada; a sample repertoire of the PolyGram music available ranging from such chestnuts as the Spring Allegro from Vivaldi’s Four Seasons and Jerry Lee Lewis’ Great Balls of Fire to 10 CC’s Dreadlock Holiday and Bananarama’s Venus; and case histories showing how PolyGram products have been used.

10,000 titles

PolyGram distributes more than 10,000 titles in Canada on cassette, cd and video.

The m.a.p. newsletter summarizes PolyGram developments – the first issue points out PolyGram recently bought the Motown recording label and its catalogue of musicians such as The Four Tops, Marvin Gaye, The Supremes and Stevie Wonder, as well as new acts such as Boyz II Men and Johnny Gill – reports on new releases and offers incentive managers the chance to win new cd releases by returning a music trivia questionnaire by fax.

Pietrunti says the m.a.p. binder is a way of letting premium program managers know about PolyGram, to tell them about music in marketing.

‘It’s a talking piece for when we’re not there,’ he says.

Pietrunti says there were 100 replies to the PolyGram bind-in cards, which she considers ‘a great response.’

But the even greater response PolyGram is looking for will come, the company hopes, when The M.A.P. program moves to direct mail later this year.

Shelton says he expects the response to PolyGram’s direct mail initiative to be low the first time out, but to improve ‘radically’ thereafter.

He says, over time, it is expected the response rate will be at least 25% and perhaps higher.

Shelton says the first mail out will probably be this fall to names gathered from lists Cundari Group and PolyGram have generated with a target of about 900 names.

Of these names, Shelton says about 30 of them will be promotions agencies and the rest will be companies with larger salesforces.

Pietrunti says PolyGram will be looking at mailing lists for the next while, adding, some names will come from lists that have been gathered from events sponsored by PolyGram in the past.

She is reluctant to divulge names, but says industries such as travel, automotive, pharmaceuticals and insurance companies, as well as promotions houses are all likely targets.

And Pietrunti says since PolyGram is owned by Phillips, the multinational based in The Netherlands, the company could put together an entire electronics package.

Shelton says The M.A.P., as well as creating awareness, has a positioning role for PolyGram.

He says elsewhere around the world, PolyGram has promoted itself forcefully, but in Canada that has not been the case until now.

He says what PolyGram wants to do is position itself as the international authority on music.