‘Austin American-Statesman’ Commercial ‘Slams’ Home Message

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By: E&P Staff

The Austin (Texas) American-Statesman has launched an aggressive promotional campaign that emphasizes the print newspaper with testimonials from characters that are delivered in a slam-poetry style.

In one, for instance, a young woman wonders who has time for Twitter and Facebook and online gossip and says, “I secretly hope my future boyfriend reads the Statesman and loves my wrinkles, because I do.”

The campaign, planned for 18 months, uses various taglines including “You Life. Your Statesman.” and “This is my headline. This is my Statesman.” The campaign includes television and radio spots, online and newspaper print ads.

The idea is to promote the relevance of the print product to readers’ everyday lives, the paper says.

“From local news to information on finances, sports, coupons and more, the Statesman is the way that more than 800,000 people in our area start and end the day,” Vice President for Marketing Lisa Sullivan said in a statement.

The commercials are intended to deliver the message with “a fun Austin-like flair,” the newspaper said.

“Utilizing the slam poetry form — a theatrical art form of telling a story — five different characters speak as poets on how the Statesman touches all aspects of their lives,” the paper’s announcement said. The personas of the characters was based on internal research and input from focus groups, the Statesman added.

Through May 31, the Statesman is running the “What’s Your Headline? Slam Poetry” contest in which entrants “are asked to share, in the form of a slam poem, how they live their lives better with the Statesman.” Three winners will receive gift cards in amounts ranging from $100 to $500.

The Statesman said the campaign over the next few months will begin to focus on the newspaper’s journalists.

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