Keiler Effort Merges Print and New Media: Sikorsky Gets Mileage From Small Ad Budget

To stretch Sikorsky Aircraft’s advertising dollars, Keiler & Co. turned to the Internet.
For the first time, the Farmington, Conn.-based agency has combined traditional print advertising and the electronic medium in an ad campaign, said Don Wilson, Keiler’s vice president of operations.
“[Sikorsky] is a government contractor to a large extent, and they don’t have a large amount of money to spend on advertising. So we brainstormed on how to solve their problem and get the message out,” Wilson said. The agency decided to use a Web site to promote the client’s products in a cost-effective way, noted Wilson.
The campaign features striking photographs of aircraft with the tagline, “The fastest way to the future of vertical flight.”
The ads are without body copy, but a headline identifies the aircraft by both name and probable length of service. One headline reads, “Search & Rescue, 2002 A.D.” Another reads, “War Horse, 2025 A.D.”
The address of the company’s Web site is prominently displayed in the top right corner of each execution. The site provides a detailed explanation of each aircraft and background information on the company.
One eye-catching ad shows a helicopter silhouetted before pink and blue clouds, with the headline, “Stealth Warrior, 2006 A.D.” The execution gives a Web address (www.sikorsky.com/comanche) that identifies the helicopter featured.
“This was a one-two punch, a specific effort to push people to the site from the ads,” Wilson said. “We wanted to get [readers’] attention and draw them in.”
The effort was unveiled during the Paris Air Show in June. Since then, ads have run in trade publications and will continue for several years, Wilson said.
For this campaign, Wilson stepped into his former role as creative director. “It was just easier for me to take a sabbatical [from running agency operations], shoot the air-to-air shots for this campaign and let all the other creative people work on what they are doing,” Wilson said.
Wilson teamed up with art directors Diann Thomson and Susan Pearson, and copywriter David Haskell to create the print ads. James Pettus and Aaron Dietz assisted in developing the Web site.
Sikorsky, based in Stratford, Conn., has been a client of Keiler for 16 years.