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Pushing it Through

Our greenfield advantage for securing the largest publications marketing campaign in Canada's history was that we were the only publisher that could get it done in the time frame.

The campaign was to market the Niagara destination through 500,000, 96 page, high gloss, perfect bound magazines distributed through Canada Post and commuter stations throughout Ontario.

The problem was that although the acting President of the Regional Tourism Organization, who signed the purchase order, understood this, the acting board members, (some of whom had just joined this newly created organization) did not.  And some of them had reasons to want the business done by some other company or even to differ the project.

We faced twenty people who questioned the single source strategy and our capability. We had no choice but to let them know we would accept their decision to proceed or not to proceed and to ask for an opportunity to show what we could do. We were given 4 days. We had other deadlines for other projects as well.

Four of us worked like dogs. Luckily, we had enough tourism marketing resources (photos, articles, ads, etc.) - more than anyone else in the region. We put together 20, two page spreads, printed them and arrived right on time for the next meeting.

Some crossed arms and stony faces greeted us. I really enjoyed pulling out page after page of proof. The . committee members circled the table littered with large printouts. Paper flew from hand to hand. The skeptics were quiet. For a while.

I can't say that the rest was easy or that everyone became a champion for us. Some the players tried to put obstacles in our way and we had to play some hardball ourselves.

I can say that we delivered a quality product in an unprecedented time frame and that the marketing program was a success. I can also state that the marketplace finally understood our greenfield advantage and that we secured additional business because of our performance.