Staples Makes Office Supply Shopping Easy: Campaign Analysis

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It’s the second week after the holidays and admit it: you’re still playing catch up. Between recovering from the New Year’s shenanigans, returning calls from frantic clients and trying to sort out your boss’s requests, it’s been impossible to find the time to restock those much needed office supplies, hasn’t it?

Turns out, Staples has got the solution. How many of you have seen their clever little 30-second spots featuring a shiny red “Easy Button” that saves the day no matter the situation? Well, turning that that dream into an online reality, Staples—with a little help from McCann-Erickson—kicked off 2006 by launching a downloadable Easy Button to compliment those already successful T.V. spots, on New Year’s Day. Though McCann-Erickson and Staples have been collaborating and rolling out parts of the “Button to Button” campaign since January of 2005, this newest addition to their marketing push signals the office giant’s first foray in to the world of downloadable desktop tools.

According to Staples’ spokesperson, Debbie Hohler, this particular little desktop ditty “was created as a way to personify how Staples makes it easy.” Hohler adds, “Staples, by promise… make[s] buying office products easy. So the Easy Button is sort of a fun icon that comes to the rescue in different situations. We thought it would be fun to have an Easy Button that’s downloadable, that people can have on their desktop and that they can click on [to] immediately bring them to some games that will be there. It [also] takes you to Staples.com so you can take care of all your office product orderings. It’s just kind of cute and fun.”

With the Easy Button tool, Staples hopes to garner the interest of their tried-and-true demographic, which Hohler says is primarily small business owners and people who work from home offices. For search fanatics, the button opens a search box right on theirs desktops—so if they’re searching out anything from a #2 pencil to a desk organizer to printer paper, all they have to do is type it in, hit the Easy Button and prepare to find themselves transported Star Trek-style to the correct Staples page.

“There are five different buttons of interest,” Hohler adds. “So you can go to Staples.com, [but] there’s [also] one for online specials, one for the rewards center—which is a customer reward program—the local circular, so you can see what the specials are for the week, and [you can] also find a store in your area. She continues, “It’s a handy, dandy thing, especially if you’re constantly making purchases from the web site… They do make it very easy and it gets [you] there very quickly.”

As for how well this magic button is being received thus far, after only a week on the proverbial shelves it’s too soon to tell. But the good news is that Staples plans to keep this campaign around for a while. Anything to make 9-5 life just a little bit easier is indeed a relief.

Get your own desktop Easy Button here.

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