Sample kits Pac a wallop for Today’s Parent Group

Today's Parent Group of Toronto eyed Treasure Pac for three years before the targetted sampling company for new mothers became available for purchase.But buy it Today's Parent did, says its president and chief executive officer, Beverly Topping, because Treasure Pac was...

Today’s Parent Group of Toronto eyed Treasure Pac for three years before the targetted sampling company for new mothers became available for purchase.

But buy it Today’s Parent did, says its president and chief executive officer, Beverly Topping, because Treasure Pac was an ‘obvious extension’ to her company’s marketing strategy.

Marketing company

Today’s Parent, Topping is quick to note in a recent interview, sees itself as a marketing company rather than just a magazine company.

And Topping says the acquisition of Treasure Pac allows Today’s Parent to extend its reach.

‘It complements what we do,’ she says.

‘We have programs, including a pre-natal sampling program, that is targetted towards women before they have their babies.

‘We have a magazine that is distributed in the hospitals so that there’s information going to them right as they have a baby.

Complements advertisers

‘The Treasure Pac complements that distribution of the magazine, and it very much complements the advertisers in our magazine.

‘It gives them an opportunity to coupon, to sample, as well as do the print side within the publication.’

Topping says her company has already tested Today’s Parent magazine subscription offers in Treasure Pac and found a strong response.

So, she says, in addition to its other benefits, Treasure Pac represents a chance to get new subscribers the magazine otherwise would not.

ith the right offer, Treasure Pac will generate many new names for the Today’s Parent database and expand its continuity children’s book business.

In other words, there were strong business reasons for acquiring Treasure Pac, says Topping, in addition to the sampling program – which offers such things to new mothers as baby wipes, talcum powder, soap, shampoo – being profitable in its own right.

Embracing TV

As for further media mixing, Today’s Parent – which already has the series Today’s Parent Television – is embracing tv with something of a passion.

Topping says tv and broadcasting in general is a big growth area for her company in the next few years.

She says although nothing has been signed yet, Today’s Parent is talking to the newly licensed specialty services as well as the networks to expand Today’s Parent Television and to create one-hour specials.

Topping says the reason for moving into tv is simple.

‘I think the marketers today are looking for a much more integrated approach to marketing,’ she says.

‘Remember, [Today's Parent is] just a very vertical niche [company.] We talk to a group of people who are not masses.

‘They’re just a group of people who are going through the process of having children, and they’re going through psychological change, physical change and emotional change all at the same time.

‘So, our attitude is, we would like to surround that particular consumer while they’re going through all these changes, and provide them with information and messages not just through television, not just magazines, not just direct mail, not through trial and sample, but all of those areas.’

Topping says that by taking this approach, it allows Today’s Parent to present a much more effective and consistent marketing message for the company’s advertisers.

Of course, babies do not stay babies forever, so as well as the ante-natal and post-natal markets, Today’s Parent intends to market to children, again using mixed media.

Topping says the children’s market is something the company is doing ‘a fair bit of research and investigation’ into.

To reach children, ‘in an ideal world’, Topping says her company would employ the same media it uses now to reach parents: magazines, direct mail, database marketing and tv.

‘We are working on a particular project right now, and it’s premature to announce it, but it [uses] all of [those media] and it is marketing to children,’ she says, adding Today’s Parent should be able to announce the project by the end of this month.