A&G: ‘Ready to Do E-Business’

Allen & Gerritsen’s first branding campaign for SilverStream Software uses silver-tinted photography and poses the question, “Are you ready to do e-business?”

Targeting senior-level executives and other corporate decision makers, the effort makes the point that “there are certain things as a leader of a business that you [normally] wouldn’t accept, but these things are happening in the e-business world,” said Mick O’Brien, creative director at Allen & Gerritsen, Watertown, Mass.

One ad shows a bow-tied, bespectacled, frightened-looking young man beneath the headline, “Would you send this sales rep to meet one of your best clients?” Copy continues: “Doing business successfully has always meant putting your best foot forward—and today, that includes your Web strategy. At SilverStream, we provide the software and services that help companies like yours deliver an Internet experience that has the breadth, depth and professionalism your customers expect.”

A second execution shows a businessman stepping out of a cab onto wet cement with the copy, “Would you ask customers to go through this before doing business with you?”

“It’s more a solution sell than a technology sell,” O’Brien explained, noting that the Burlington, Mass., client had in past ad efforts targeted mainly IT professionals.

Print ads from the agency are breaking in publications such as The Wall Street Journal, Business 2.0, Forbes and Wired. Carat Freeman, Newton, Mass., is handling buying chores. The ads will likely run though February, with new executions breaking shortly thereafter, O’Brien said.

Boston-based photographer Alan Penn shot the silvery photographs, which, it is hoped, will give the ads an added visual dimension that will help them stand out from the competition, O’Brien said.

O’Brien and Doug Chapman served as creative directors on the campaign. Aaron DaSilva and Jon Eckman wrote the copy and Mark Ware handled art direction.

A new SilverStream Web site, interactive executions, direct mail and collateral have also been developed.