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Building a Green Campaign

(December 2010) posted on Tue Dec 07, 2010

Portland Color helps Bloomingdale's show off its sustainable side.

click an image below to view slideshow

By Jake Widman

Steve Kinney, Portland Color's vice president of marketing and sales, picks up the story: "In many ways, that's very much what we did with Bloomingdale's too – realizing how this particular product line [our green printing capabilities] fits a need and then proposing it to them as a solution. That's the kind of thing that's required for a little company in Portland, Maine, to compete successfully in New York City."

"With any client you approach," continues Kinney, "you never know what their campaign strategy already is, or what their rollout strategy is. But what you do see are opportunities within the store to make things better. Typically, what I try to look at is an old or ‘dirty’ technology and then apply our materials, techniques, and efficiency."

Kinney began with a cold call to Margaret Romanowski, Bloomingdale's design director of graphics and signage. "I get a lot of phone calls from different vendors asking if they can come in and show me their work," recalls Romanowski. "Steve called at a good time, during one of our calmer periods. He came in and met with me, when we were in the process of planning our spring/summer campaign and had decided that part of our campaign would be about being green. So when he was explaining what their company was about, it just seemed like a very good fit at the time."

"It was a great meeting," recalls Kinney. "I went down to New York and told her about the SGP and about Portland Color’s history and how we like to work. And I identified places within the stores where they could use our materials. That's really where we solidify our relationship, because it shows the client you're not just there to present the same capabilities that everybody else has."

"When I met with them the first time, we didn't really have a lot of background for our campaign," says Romanowski. "We only knew we'd be dealing with the NRDC and that the campaign was going to be about how to make our lives greener. We're a philanthropic company, and we have pop-up boutiques in the stores for every campaign we do, so I did know something like that was going to happen. "