Hallmark: $50 Mil. Greeting Via Burnett

Leo Burnett will attempt to imbue card giving with an everyday appeal in a $50 million effort for Hallmark Cards that introduces a line of lower-priced offerings.
TV spots make up the bulk of the launch of Hallmark’s Warm Wishes cards, which will sell for 99 cents each and roll out to grocery and drug stores as well as Hallmark shops this month. Its full-price cards cost around $2.50.
A 30-second TV spot that breaks March 15 gives examples of when such a card might be appropriate. On-screen messages include: “It’s your boss’ 39th birthday. Again,” and “Your daughter answered call waiting.”
A voiceover finishes the price-point message: “Suddenly, everything’s an occasion now that there’s dozens of Hallmarks for 99 cents.”
The campaign’s rhetorical “Why not?” tagline is meant to show consumers there’s no excuse not to send a card, said Ellie Callison, Hallmark’s vice president of advertising. She said the company will boost overall spending to support Warm Wishes.
Later ads will link the line to holidays that traditionally provide big business for the client, such as Easter and Mother’s Day, Callison said.
Hallmark is eager to find new users to fend off incursions by lower-priced rivals. Other promotions for the line include card giveaways at 20,000 retailers and in newspapers in 24 markets.
The company will continue its “You know what to look for” tag for its flagship line and “where appropriate,” Callison said.
The Warm Wishes line was developed from research that showed consumers wanted cheaper cards that were widely available. The work did not result from meetings that Hallmark held with its agencies last summer to discuss strategy [Adweek, June 29].
Hallmark Inc. spent $130 million on advertising for all its divisions last year, according to Competitive Media Reporting.