Rubbermaid will target the estimated 43 million Americans who will move this year with an estimated $10 million marketing effort that includes TV and direct mail advertising.
The new focus results from research indicating consumers who are packing and moving are heavy users of a variety of Rubbermaid products, from cleaning supplies to storage containers, said Jim Miller, director of marketing communications at the Wooster, Ohio, company.
"This is a huge untapped market and worthy of addressing as an annual seasonal selling period," Miller said.
A 30-second TV spot from Martin/Williams in Minneapolis breaks nationally Jan. 28. It positions the company as a helpful partner during the stressful moving period. In the spot, a husband informs his wife he's been transferred. To reduce the clutter and make their home more attractive to prospective buyers, the woman invests in several Rubbermaid products. By the end of the spot, the house looks so good, she doesn't want to sell it.
Two other spots created by J. Brown Associates in Chicago will involve co-marketing tie-ins with local retailers, Miller said.
Rubbermaid will also include a direct mail piece in the U.S. Postal Service's Welcome Kit, which is sent to households who have registered a change of address.
The "America on the Move" program will be Rubbermaid's major marketing effort for 1999, Miller said. However, the company will continue to showcase its kitchen, closet organization and shed and outdoor storage products through print and direct mail programs using its "Ideas that last" umbrella tagline, he said.
Rubbermaid spent $24 million on advertising through the first nine months of 1998, according to Competitive Media Reporting. That was up from about $7 million in all of 1997.