Citron Rolls Out Palm Campaign

Citron Haligman Bedecarré, which last spring won the $70 million Palm account, its largest piece of business to date, is launching its first campaign for the client.

The worldwide print and TV push arrives at a time of rapid expansion at the San Francisco agency. “We’ve had other visible campaigns, but it was clear this is one that will define the agency. That raises the bar a little bit,” said Kirk Citron, agency partner and principal.

The campaign continues the “Simply Palm” tagline created by previous agency FCB Worldwide, and shows people from different walks of life benefitting from the company’s handheld personal digital assistant devices.

One print ad, for example, shows a young boy wearing a cape. Next to the photo is an e-mail note from the youngster telling his dad that he “flew over tall buildings and fought bad guys” that day. Text below suggests Palm devices deliver everything you need from the Internet, such as e-mails from family members.

The campaign includes a TV spot with similar themes.

“The challenge was to help shift perceptions of Palm,” Citron said. “It’s more than an organizer. … It’s something that lets you carry your personal information wher ever you go.”

Agency officials said they wanted to reposition Palm’s products as a vital part of life rather than mere expensive gadgets.

Citron’s creative and account directors prepared for the campaign by using the client’s products, such as the Palm VII. They also conducted focus groups to learn how different people—from businessmen to hourly workers—view the devices. The resulting campaign, they said, can appeal to three distinct groups: those who use Palm devices, those who are interested in them and those who have never heard of Palm.

“The Palm never appeared in the ads. … This way, we could communicate the ways Palm could touch your life while at the same time celebrating the strong emotional attachment [people] already had with the brand,” one agency member said.

The executive creative director was Matt Haligman; the copywriter was Scott Stripling.

The Santa Clara, Calif., company chose Citron, which is primarily known for its work with technology and e-commerce clients, in May. More TV spots are in production.