Time Warner Cable's National division chose a different tack to generate digital cable sales: a "video door hanger" marketing program developed by CTSi, a creative agency, and Renegade Productions Inc., a multimedia production house.
The video door hanger delivered to consumers is a videocassette that contains a marketing message. It's been used successfully by health, fitness, travel and automotive companies to provide a short, information-packed sensory experience for prospective users.
Time Warner Cable decided to test the concept in a Florida system. The MSO set up three 400-household subgroups to market a special offer for digital cable.
The first subgroup received a post card, and a call-to-action phone number. The second subgroup received a video door hanger videocassette along with a flyer and post card, like the first subgroup.
The third subgroup received the same package as the second, but also received a follow-up visit from a direct sales representative.
The first group generated a 2.7 percent response rate, typical for a direct mail.
But the second group generated an 8.97 percent response rate, while the third group generated a 14.89 percent response rate.
The video door hanger made the difference. Customers perceived they were "chosen" to receive the tape. And the video made it easier to explain what digital cable was all about.
Time Warner included the business cards of sales representatives in the materials for the third group, which eliminated unnecessary multiple customer contacts. Any customers calling in could be passed on from the customer-service representative to the correct sales rep.
"A VDH campaign can be both a persuasive and cost-effective direct response marketing tool for the cable industry," said Linnea Boogades, national sales and marketing coordinator for Renegade.