Hallmark Seeks New Strategies

Hallmark Cards is launching a new campaign for its Shoebox line of greeting cards, while also planning meetings with agencies about its future advertising and marketing strategies.
The campaign for the offbeat Shoebox line from lead agency Leo Burnett, Chicago, includes a two-page ad in July issues of 16 national consumer magazines. Attached is a lime green envelope that can be redeemed for a free Shoebox card with the purchase of another Hallmark card.
That effort comes as Hallmark continues to examine several new creative strategies for its flagship Hallmark card line. Its latest TV and print campaign, tagged “You know what to look for,” combines the brand-image message it has used for the past several years with a price/value message.
While it leads the greeting card market with a 42 percent share, according to Hoover’s Inc., Hallmark is seeking new ideas to build that market and its share. According to sources, it has scheduled meetings over the next four weeks with its agencies for consumer advertising (Burnett), business-to-business advertising (Valentine Radford in Kansas City, Mo.) and promotions (SJI Inc. and Erwin Marketing Communications in St. Louis) to discuss future marketing strategies on its $100 million account.
The company is not threatening to open reviews, sources said, but is pushing hard for new ideas from its roster shops.
Separately, sources said Hallmark next month will hear presentations from Burnett and a few nonroster shops, believed to include Young & Rubicam, New York. These presentations, about which Hallmark has been talking to agencies for several months, will cover recommendations on “corporate strategic positioning,” according to one source, and not a corporate ad campaign.
Amanda Hulshof, Hallmark’s manager of marketing media relations, would not comment about possible meetings. Burnett officials also would not comment.