GTE Calls on BSMG

GTE Network Services has launched a major new customer drive with the help of BSMG Worldwide/Southwest.
Entitled “Look to GTE now,” the promotion lets customers test drive up to 15 advanced calling services, such as call forwarding and voicemail, for 99 cents during a trial month.
Don Adams, who played Maxwell Smart on the 1960s sitcom Get Smart, is the voiceover for an animated television spot and three radio commercials. In addition, the campaign includes print, outdoor, direct mail and telemarketing components.
The effort is billed by the agency as the single largest promotion in GTE’s history. The budget for the campaign was not disclosed.
The campaign began last month in Los Angeles and two other California markets as well as Fort Wayne, Ind. The effort will eventually roll out to all 24 states in which GTE operates.
BSMG group manager Sheri Lose said that the campaign’s strategy arose from research showing a lack of consumer awareness of the variety of services now offered via telephone.
“The theory is that if people try it, they’ll really like it and keep the services,” said Lose. “With this, you can give it a try, kick the wheels.”
Lose also noted that research indicated consumers were more willing to accept a 99-cent offer than a free one.
Although GTE’s agency of record is Temerlin McClain in Irving, Texas, the telecommunications company works with BSMG on a special project basis.
BSMG and Temerlin, which have offices in the same building, are both are owned by True North Communications in Chicago.