Ogilvy Campaign Backs BP’s Interactive Stations

A major campaign touting BP’s new interactive gas stations breaks in four markets next month and will roll out globally over several years, a company executive said.

The company, formerly BP Amoco, is opening its first BP Connect stores in Chicago, Cleveland, Indianapolis and Atlanta. The stores feature gourmet shops and screens at the pump where customers can order items such as wine or croissants or simply log onto the Internet.

The Chicago office of Ogilvy & Mather, which picked up BP’s $200 million consolidated global account in 1999, is working on TV and radio spots for BP Connect that will break in March.

Direct mail and public relations initiatives are also part of the campaign, which continues the company’s “beyond petroleum” marketing theme, said David Welch, BP’s director of brand management for U.S. marketing.

Ogilvy officials would not discuss creative details of the campaign, which is in production. Welch declined to give spending behind the BP Connect campaign, although the total will increase as stores open.

BP Connect stores are set to open worldwide over the next three to four years, each with a local advertising and promotional campaign.

The first BP Connect store opened last month in Indianapolis. While Ogilvy handles the national promotions, BP is tapping local agencies for local media relations work. Caldwell VanRiper/Marc handled work in Indianapolis.

In July, BP launched a brand campaign explaining its name change formed by the combination of former British Petroleum, Amoco Corp., Atlantic Richfield (ARCO) and Burmah Castrol. Ogilvy London’s global brand team handled most of those duties, he said.

In the U.S., BP spent $66 million on advertising through September 2000 and $73 million in 1999, according to Competitive Media Reporting.