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Britt Todisco Lauren Bell Laura Maddox Megan Handerhan

Executive Summary Overview
Industry Overview Company Overview SWOT Analysis

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Assumptions About Potential Consumers Methods & Key Findings 7

Marketing & Advertising Strategies

Marketing Communication Goals Creative Strategy Media Strategy

9 10 11 11 13

Below the Line Plans

Budget Breakdown Evaluation

Plans to Evaluate Closing



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The Sharpie Brand
Sharpie is artistic, loud, and fun. Its immense variety of colors and the ability to mark any surface makes it the #1 permanent marker in the US. Sharpie has always encouraged creative and self expression in their past advertising campaigns, and the brand itself has a fun and exciting personality.

Creative Lifestyle Defined

Inspiration. Innovation. Originality. Creativity. The creative lifestyle is one that cannot be confined to one specific definition. Creativity is a seed that takes root in every individual, though in different forms. It is a personality trait that has the ability to completely define an individual. So who lives the Creative Lifestyle? The artist. The writer. The thrifty mom. The on a budget bride. Everyone. The ability to turn imagination into reality? Thats creativity.

Sharpie Meets the Creative Lifestyle

With over 40 colors and 15 different products, Sharpie is the quintessence of every creatives Xanadu. This campaign reaches out and grabs the creative spirit in every consumer, and connects them directly to their perfect creative outlet: Sharpie.

Creative Execution
Our creative executions epitomize the creative lifestyle. With an emphasis on the unstoppable sweep of Do it Yourself projects flooding the lives of every consumer, the vivid and inspirational imagery used, and a number of exciting and unique promotions and partnerships, this Sharpie campaign embraces the already-loyal consumers and encourages the remaining individuals to discover and learn to express their own creative spirit.

Write Here. Write Now. Our positioning is unmistakable. We are directing our campaign towards the aspiring creative consumer. By celebrating the artistic, loud, and fun nature of Sharpies past and marrying it with the needs of the aspiring creatives, Sharpie can break down the wall of preconceived notions and expand its market share to include more than


just consumers labeling moving boxes, and teenagers drawing on their shoes. Sharpie is more than that old black permanent marker, its the key to creative expression.


What we know about the industry:
Office supply manufacturing is an industry that deals with the production of pens, pencils, felttip markers, crayons, chalk, pencil sharpeners, staplers, hand-operated stamps, modeling clay, and inked ribbons. The end consumers are usually retailers, consumers, businesses, and office-supply retailers. The profit margin of this industry is diminishing due to various external factors. The main economic drivers in this industry are the demand from office-supply retail stores, the number of K-12 students, the percentage of services conducted online and the national unemployment rate. According to IBIS World industry analyst Kevin Boyland, the demand for office supplies is decreasing due to electronic communication and low-cost imports. This decline is cutting into the manufactures bottom lines, increasing the costs to create their products. Because of this, firms have had to cut staff numbers, lower production levels, and in some cases even exit the industry. Overall, the industry is in the declining stage of its life cycle due to the increased presence of technology in offices and education systems. Annual growth from 2007-2012 was -2.6% and the outlook for the next four years looks to be the same with -2.7% growth (Boyland, 2012). The outlook for the Art and Office Supply Manufacturing industry looks discouraging with strong competition from imports that will hurt domestic demand. This will hurt overall industry revenue. However, people are still using Art and Office supplies. The industry may have to face strong competition from imports but if they build their brand to target consumers specific needs, the industry may thrive.

In the industry: Electronic communication and the recession are taking big tolls on the office and art supply manufacturing industry. Just last year, revenue decreased 3.3%, according to an IBIS World report. Within the next five years, falling demand and a decrease in production will be harsh on the industrys growth prospects. The US office supply stores industry includes about 9,500

establishments with a combined annual revenue of $20 billion. Large companies include Office Depot, Staples, and OfficeMax. The industry is concentrated; the 50 largest companies account for more than 80 percent of industry revenue (hoovers. com). The writing utensil industry alone makes over $4 billion in sales each year from pens, pencils, markers, erasers and other similar components.

In the economy:
The recession that started in 2008 is taking a toll on how people spend their disposable income. According to an IBIS World report, consumer spending dropped 1.9% during 2009, which led to less purchases of office and art supplies.

Among consumers: Since launching the Uncap Whats Inside print and digital campaign, Sharpie gained 1.8 million Facebook fans. Consumers are looking for a steal rather than a splurge. They arent buying their go-to office supplies anymore because they need to be smart about how theyre spending their money. According to the NY Times (2011), office supply sales were down 32% in 2012. In order for Sharpie to remain relevant among consumers, they need to be high quality and cheap.


What we know about Sharpie:
Newell Rubbermaid, which specializes in housewares, hardware, home furnishings, baby products, hair products, and office item, owns Sharpie. Sharpie was first created in 1857 by Frederick W. Redington and William H. Sanford, Jr. in Worcester Massachusetts. Redington and Sanford created Sharpies parent company, Sanford Manufacturing Company with ink and glue being the businesss main focus. The companys biggest success came with the creation of the Sharpie marker in 1964. The Sharpie Fine Point black marker was the first penstyle permanent marker. Johnny Carson and Jack Parr contributed to Sharpies early success with their celebrity endorsements. Throughout the 1990s Sharpies popularity grew exponentially due to the $5 billion memorabilia industry. During the early 2000s, Sharpie introduced six new product lines and introducing twelve new colors. This growth in the product line establishes a loyal customer base and the company still thrives today.

What we know about Sharpies brand:

The Sharpie brand is loud, exciting, and fun. The personality it embraces encourages creative expression and individuality. In the office supply industry, computer software, computer hardware, office paper and stationery are the top selling products, and not writing utensils. With office paper and stationery, though, comes the purchase of writing utensils such as Sharpie. Because of the endurance of Sharpies, consumers dont purchase them on a regular basis. Sharpies become something you buy during Back to School shopping. Unless you run out, the brand isnt turned to many times throughout the year.

Sharpies current positioning and messaging:

What were really about is putting fans at the center of our story. Its not about ambushing an audience with an ad; its about taking the passion within our community and amplifying that. - Ryan Rouse, Global Director of Marketing for Sharpie The last time Sharpie really had anything to say to its consumers through a consistent campaign was in 2009. The Campaign Uncap Whats Inside and Write Out Loud ran that year, focusing on telling the consumer to release their inner creativity. David Beckham was added to the team as a celebrity endorser. Also drawings, handwriting, and doodles were a common theme during these campaigns, and actually always has been with Sharpie.

Sharpie already has amazing products. The push for a campaign, and along with that a brand image, is just not there. Since Sharpies last synergized campaign was in 2009; It is time for some brand awareness, image, and loyalty that will come with a successful advertising campaign. A website is in place, but the consumer really has no reason to visit the Sharpie site, and they arent receiving the message that they should go to the site because Sharpie has not advertised effectively. Sharpie has an inspiring message, but the consumer has no way of hearing them because the consumer cannot find them.


! Sharpie offers a wide range of quality products ! Sharpies product distribution is geographically diverse ! Because of a strong social media presence, Sharpie has accumulated a large fan base ! Sharpie has an incredibly strong brand image ! The brand has already established effective positioning as the permanent marker brand.

! Sharpie resides in a mature market ! Because of the previous successful positioning, sharpie is already known as goto for permanent markers but the company offers a variety of other products. Thus consumers tend to bypass the rest of the product line when associating thoughts with Sharpie.

! Sharpie is already considered the the band aid of permanent markers, and its already well positioned, so by using those strengths the company can ! expand their marketing goals to include the plethora of other products ! Sharpies products are already widely used for many different things, the fact that celebrities frequently use them because theyll write on anything, is an interesting direction to take and an opportunity to reach out to possibly a wider fan-base.

! The market Sharpie is a part of has tons of competition ! Sharpie has almost boxed itself in as the permanent marker company ! The ever-evolving digital age is rendering actual writing less and less popular. More consumers type their notes then jot them down with a pen.


Sharpies target market has usually been men and women between the ages of 15 to 60 years old (Julig, 2013). It is exciting to understand that the potential Sharpie consumer is very broad in range. Many types of people and personalities can be targeted through advertising. Because of the large range of people, personality types, and ages of Sharpie consumers, potential customer targeting could go many different routes. Sharpie products are perfect for the creative enthusiast, someone who craves self-expression. More specifically, women as a particular demographic would have a wide range of potential for different directions and specifics when it comes to determining a target market. For example, the event planner: every woman at some point in her life is an event planner. The mom planning her childs birthday parties, the maid of honor planning the bridal shower. The male demographic would purchase Sharpie as the business manager, or the single dad. Other target markets non-specific to gender are: the artist/creative, the student, the young professional. Sharpies continuous flow of new products is the main factor that creates huge potential brand success. Consumers already choose Sharpie as their go-to writing utensil, the main problem is that they dont consciously realize it. Sharpie has the opportunity to maximize brand loyalty, and overall brand image. When consumers realize how much they love Sharpie as a product, combined with the companys brand image created through this campaign, they will not be able to get enough of Sharpie. A cohesive ad campaign that matches the image of the website with the overall brand image, while also directing people to the website, (which should be the central hub of the entire operation) will successfully come together to create brand loyalty and a large following. . Think of a brand like Nike. Consumers love it, and they know they love it. They buy it, but the key is that they also repeatedly share how much they love it. They follow it on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. They communicate and express it to everyone they know! This is what Sharpie is missing. As of right now, the only voice they hear from Sharpie is what sits on the shelf on the School Supplies isle; the products offered. People are buying, but they are not sharing or expressing their love for the product or the brand. And they also have no way of knowing what to go out and buy until they are already in the store. There is major potential for a call to action, especially when new products are offered. Consumers should hear about the new product, and then run to the store to buy it.



Methods and Sample Sizes
By conducting our survey, we wanted to find out if consumers know about Sharpies other products and if they use them regularly. Consumers think of a black permanent marker when they think of Sharpie, but we wanted to know if they know the brand is way more than just a black permanent marker. We also wanted to assess their brand loyalty when it comes to pens and writing utensils and if there are any sentimental feelings toward the Sharpie brand.

! Range o We sampled a large variety of consumers both inside and outside of our target market ! Cost o Because of the flexibility, ease of creation, and ease of administration the costs of performing a survey are minimal. ! Variability o From our samples we drew conclusions about which characteristics fit our population of interest. Our secondary research was a varied collection of prior research, conducted by numerous sources, regarding Sharpie. We took note of market trends for the writing supply industry within the United States and the other key competitors directly opposing Sharpie.

Key Findings
! Most people use Sharpies for organization purposes and DIY projects which gives us insight into what our target market should be. ! When shopping for writing utensils, people look for the type of tip and how reliable it is. This is a positive research finding for the Sharpie brand because it is already associated with reliable writing utensils and a variety of tips. ! When thinking about purchasing a writing utensil, Bic comes to mind first, then Sharpie, then Pilot. This is an opportunity to build brand awareness for Sharpie. ! Out of our 100 responses, 99 people say that they currently own a Sharpie product and one person said they owned a Sharpie product in the past. People are buying Sharpie, its up to us to expand the usage of the product.


Target Audience
Due to our findings and realization that people do not view Sharpie as a specific writing utensil, but instead view Sharpie as a reliable permanent marking tool, we decided to target women and men 20-35 who are determined and motivated to get a job done, as well as intrigued by the notion that everyone has a creative side waiting to be discovered.

Sales Opportunities
Sales opportunities we came across is to build sales in the general writing purposes category. We will build Sharpies brand image as an everyday writing utensil as well as a write on any surface utensil.

Message Strategy
Message strategies we will utilize is a positioning statement and theme that centers Sharpie around the go-to tool for creativity and organization. Write here. Write now. We will use a strategic foundation to our communication style and approach and communicate Sharpies unifying idea to our target market: women 18-35. The big, unifying idea for this campaign is to position Sharpie in the minds of consumers as the go-to tool for lifes projects. We expect to see an increase in sales within three months of starting the campaign and we will run the campaign for 14 months. We here at BLOOMcreative feel that Sharpie has a tremendous opportunity to reach past the limited market of young teenagers and into the enormous pool of aspiring creative. All that needs to be done is a little tweaking of the current advertising message, and a broadening of the media mix in use. Sharpie brand screams to be recognized, and it deserves a campaign that screams just as loud!


The creative objectives and strategies for the campaign include seeking out new ways to market the Sharpie brand while reaching the largest amount of out target market possible in a variety of different geographic markets. Our theme consists of formulating a creative strategy that speaks to our target audience and instills in them the motivation, inspiration, and passion to accomplish their dreams. . . and it all starts with Sharpie.

Elements of the campaign

Tone The ads our agency will create will include a tonality of creativity, inspiration, accomplishment, and motivation. Our advertisements will use these tones to communicate that possibilities are endless when Sharpie products are used for all types of projects. Our advertisements will spark motivation to create and work hard to achieve goals. Big Idea When we want to accomplish a goal or realize a dream, where do we begin? We begin with an idea, scribbled on a piece of paper or doodled in a journal, we begin with a marker and a post-it note, and a lot of hope. Life is a journey, and everything starts by writing it down. All of our ambitions, visions, and desires begins with a plan. Jot it down with a Sharpie, and then make it happen. WRITE HERE. WRITE NOW.
Special moments in life: Weddings, starting your own business, planning parties. . . these things all start with a plan, a to do list, a calendar, or a shopping list. Lifes most important moments are started by Sharpie, and are sparked by the simple act of writing it down. Accomplish your goals, dreams; spark it. Do what youve always wanted to do: Write here. Write Now.

Special Spokespersons In order to reach our most important demographic, we will focus on prominent DIYers and Bloggers in the digital space as our spokespeople. For example, Erica Domesek of P. S. I


made this would be a great person to endorse our Sharpie campaign because shes known for her DIY projects and has used Sharpies (permanent markers) in multiple projects.


Our Media Strategy goal is to reach 80% of men and women between the ages of 20-35 each month by the end of the campaign. The timing and scheduling objectives for this campaign consist of a pulsing schedule from July 2013 to September 2014 with higher frequency two months prior to school starting and the Holiday season. The frequency objectives of the plan include having a higher reach during the months with the highest sales - those being the months before the school year starts: July-September.

Because of our small advertising budget, we plan to stay with network television advertising to get a widespread reach. We want to have our 30-second spots every other week over NBC.

We are focusing heavily on magazine advertisements due to the artistic freedom and ability to show Sharpie at work. We plan to advertise heavily in craft magazines to appeal to the do-it-yourself market.

A promotion wed like to focus on would be the creation of a free Sharpie mobile app. This mobile app would transform any photograph, taken through the app or chosen from your photo library, and sketch it into a drawing by Sharpie. The app would be similar to Instagram, with a range of different filters, colors, and a variety of Sharpie writing utensils to choose from. After the photo is created the app would link you to the Sharpie website and show you which utensil could be used to create the drawing in real life. The app would then link to social media outlets including Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram for sharing among friends and followers.


Merchandising & Point of Sale Ideas

Our goal is to make the word Sharpie synonymous with marker or pen in the mind of the consumer. With Sharpie in the picture, other brands and competitors will not even cross the consumers mind. Their favorite writing tool is Sharpie, and its the only brand they turn to when shopping for writing utensils. Sharpie is an image of color, art, and organization, and Sharpie will host and sponsor a number of events that fit that description.

Trade shows are the first step in merchandising and selling to other businesses. With an eyecatching booth that will draw consumers in and a look and feel that corresponds with the Sharpie brand image, other business will not be able to walk past without stopping. Sponsoring the 2014 Color Run will be Sharpies largest event of the year. This 5k is known for its vibrant color, and bright hues, and who knows color better than sharpie? Sponsoring this event will be targeting the demographic we plan to focus on, (young, energetic, lifeenthusiasts) and partnering with such a trending event will solidify Sharpie in the minds of the consumer. Aside from the large events a few times during the year, Sharpie will host group crafts all throughout the year. These group crafts will be held at stores like Staples, Michaels, A. C. Moore, Hobby Lobby and other specialty craft stores. Publicizing these events on social media will bring consumers into stores that sell Sharpie, and instruct them on new and fun ways to use all the different kinds of Sharpies. They will come for the free craft, but they wont leave without purchasing a brand new pack of Sharpies. Sharpie also has the opportunity to pair up with stores known for their eye-catching design and window displays, such as Anthropologie or Free People. These stores are known to host crafty events that teach consumers how to make their own window-display-like creations, flower headbands, and other chic, hip, and DIY pieces. These stores will involve Sharpie in their design workshops and send consumers home with their own Sharpies to finish the projects in their own space. At local art galleries, Sharpie will hire an artist to live-draw at an event with food and music. The artist will live-draw only using the many types of Sharpies, while the crowd watches and


enjoys. The professional artist could also live-draw in any crowded area (a park, mall, etc.) using all the types and colors of Sharpie. Another art-focused endeavor will include an outdoor whitewashed wall in an urban area, where people will be given Sharpies to write down their hopes, dreams, goals - with words or drawings. This will follow along with the campaigns theme of Write here, write now; every defining moment in life starts with writing it down.


Based on the past advertising budgets of Sanford L. P. we, at BLOOMcreative, are proposing an exciting advertising campaign that will run from July 2013 until September 2014. For this we are requesting a budget of $5,000,000 and below you can find the breakdown of how we will allocate that sum.

Budget Breakdown
! Television Total of $3,140,000 o Production Costs - $200,000 ! One 30-second spot o Network - $2,940,000 ! NBC - One 30-second spot costs $70,000 ! 30-second spot from 8-10PM July 1, 2013 - December 20, 2013 every other week.


Total of 14 weeks - 1 spot to run each day on Monday, Wednesday, Friday

! Print Total of $1,310,400 o NY Times ! Every Sunday in the months of August, September, December, February (First two Weeks Only), August, and September. ! 24 Days @ 29,009 a day, 1/4th page color ad = $696,215 o The Knot ! Run in issues: September, March, April, May, and September ! 5 Issues @ 22,932. 15, 1 page color = $114,660. o Do It Yourself ! Run in Issues: October, November, December, February, and March ! 5 Issues @ $38,777. 00, 1/3rd page color = $193,885 o Wired ! Run in Issues: October, December, June, and July ! 4 Issues @ $64,084. 90, 1/2 page color = $256,340 o Inked ! Run in issues: August, September, October, and September ! 4 Issues @ $12,325. 00, 1 Page b&w ad = $49,300 ! Social Media Total of $125,000 o Theoretically free source of marketing, but to cover any various costs and fees that may arise, weve decided to allocate a small percentage of the budget to Social Media o Facebook ! Spend a small percentage on Facebook advertising With a reach of roughly 75 million, the price averages at about $1. 25 Per click with an allotted daily budget of $235 Plan to run the full length of campaign - 425 Days Estimated total of $100,000 o Instagram ! Become more prevalent.

! Focus more on DIY and less on random doodles. ! Sales Promotion Total of $700 o Email marketing promotions ! 5,000 people monthly with ! August 2013 - September 2014 ! $50/month = $700

! Out of Home Total of $30,000 o Graffiti Murals (new media) $30,000 ! NY, NY May-July 2014 $5,000/month ! Long Beach, CA May-July 2014 $5,000/month ! Trade shows Total of $5,000 o The School Equipment Show - San Antonio, Texas ! 4-6 December 2013 ! Cross marketing Promotions Total of $100,000 o Sponsor the Color Run May 1, 2014 - Austin, Texas ! Opportunity Buys / Contingency Total of $289,000 o Remainder of budget set aside, roughly 5%


Campaign Objective
BLOOMcreatives advertising strategy is to reach 80% of men and women between the ages of 20-35 by the end of the campaign in 2014. The following chart details how performance of our campaign will be measured.

Free Press & Publicity

Measure free press generated from promotions. !

Increase Web Traffic to Website Define the Sharpie Brand Image

Track website traffic during campaign. ! Measure the reception by focus groups and surveys. !

Increase Brand Awareness

Measure through focus groups and surveys. !

Establish Brand Preference

Solidify Sharpie as the favorite and only option when compared to competition in consumers mind. !

Increase Sales

Measure Sale changes in stores and on website during campaign. !


BLOOMcreative began plans for this campaign through pertinent research. We found that Sharpie was focusing too heavily on their young target market and completely overlooking the goldmine of aspiring creative consumers just waiting to be told that they too claim creativity, they just have to discover it! This demographic was embraced with a colorful, exciting, and conscious strategy. BLOOMcreative provides creative executions that exhilarate and inspire with just a hint of edge to attract the newly proposed target market. They were created with the aspiring creative individual in mind while still representing the core brand personality that is Sharpie. With the ingenuity and determined drive that we at BLOOMcreative exude, coupled with your inspiring product and lively brand personality, Sharpie will be exciting the inner creative spirit of every consumer, and capturing corners of the market that other companies havent even heard of.


Works Cited
Boyland, K. (2012). IBISWorld Industry Report 33994. Art & Office Supply Manufacturing in the US. Retrieved February 21, 2013 from IBISWorld database. Julig, L. (2013, January 31). 3 ways sharpie is engaging teens with social media. Retrieved from http://www.socialmediaexaminer. com/connect-with-teens-on-social-mediasharpie-case-study/ Levere, J. L. (2011, July 26). A sharpie campaign, aimed at teenagers, urges self-expression. New York Times. Retrieved from http://www.nytimes. com/2011/07/27/business/media/sharpie-aims-a-new-campaign-at-teenagers. html?pagewanted=all&_r=0

Media Calendar:


Pertinent Survey Responses Graphed