Strategy Essay Research Paper ObjectivesHallmark traditionally has

Strategy Essay, Research Paper Objectives Hallmark traditionally has been viewed as the company to use “when you care enough to send the very best,” which Hallmark would like to keep in the minds of the target market, but also use to increase sales for non-holiday seasons. Hallmark believes with continuous marketing efforts they can appeal to more women to buy cards for all occasions throughout the year.

Strategy Essay, Research Paper


Hallmark traditionally has been viewed as the company to use “when you care enough to send the very best,” which Hallmark would like to keep in the minds of the target market, but also use to increase sales for non-holiday seasons. Hallmark believes with continuous marketing efforts they can appeal to more women to buy cards for all occasions throughout the year.

Marketing Objective

Hallmark has developed the following marketing objective for the year 2001. In preparing this objective, Hallmark has estimated the cost of everyday cards at $0.99 per card.

During the calendar year for 2001, Hallmark will increase its dollar market share by two percentage points, from 40% to 42% in the $7 billion (volume) greeting card category.

Advertising Objective

The overall goal of this campaign is to increase brand consciousness among women age 18-34, who are employed full or part time or are full time students. Hallmark will use its new advertising campaign to convey this new image.

From January 1, 2001 to December 31, 2001, Hallmark Greeting Cards will attempt to make 10% of the 22.8 million females age 18-34, who are employed full or part time and have graduated high school aware that Hallmark Greeting Cards is just as important for daily use as it is for seasonal holidays.

Media Objectives

Target Market

Concentrate message delivery toward current users of greeting cards, with primary emphasis on women, age 18-34, who are employed full or part time, or full time students. This gives Hallmark an estimated target market of 22,425,000.


Recommend a promotion aimed at women in the target market in hopes that they will purchase Hallmark cards for all occasions throughout the year.

Reach and Frequency

During an average month of advertising, reach 40% of the target market at an average frequency of 9.


Increase competitive weight levels throughout the year as well as placing heavy advertising in the second and fourth quarters (specifically the months of April and November) in an effort to work in conjunction with normal seasonal increases in purchase.


Conduct a national campaign, with emphasis in the West region, where there is a high concentration of current Hallmark users. The West region includes the following states: Arizona, California, Colorado, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, Oregon, Utah, Washington, and Wyoming. Also targeting metropolitan localities, which accounts for 83% of target market.


Achieve all of the above objectives as efficiently as possible within the overall media budget of $9 million. This $9 million is only part of a larger advertising budget of $50 million.

Media Strategy and Tactics

This section contains the strategy and tactics Hallmark will use in the calendar year 2001. Here, the recommended media types are identified for Hallmark in order to deliver its message to the 22.4 million in the target market. Again, the selected target market is women, 18-34, who are employed either full or part time, or are full time students.

In the past, Hallmark has targeted all women 35+, since they fall in the largest card-consuming segment of the market. In order to reach this audience, Hallmark has primarily utilized television, magazine, and newspaper media types. For Hallmark in 2001, a different strategic approach is recommended from previous media plans. Since Hallmark is targeting a younger audience, different media types are suggested to more effectively reach that audience. The media types recommended for 2001 are radio, newspaper, magazines, as well as outdoor.

Hallmark has traditionally used television and magazines as the primary media types for advertising. However, for the 2001media plan, radio will replace television in order to more effectively reach the new target market.


Strategy When looking at the quintile index of radio compared to other media types, radio is a very effective means to reach the desired target market of women age 18-34 employed full or part time, or are a full time student. The quintile index for radio drive time reveals that out of all women, those ages 18-34 are more likely to be heavy users of this medium and 12% more likely to be an above average user. This means that Hallmark s target market of women age 18-34 is 24% more likely to be heavy and above average users of radio during drive time that the average woman. Radio mid-day terciles support radio as being a highly effective medium to reach the target market. The terciles group consumers into high, middle, and low users of radio. The indexes show that out of all women, those ages 18-34 are 14% more likely to be high users of radio (SMRB). So given both quintile and tercile indexes, radio proves to provide an effective amount of exposure to Hallmark s target market.

Aside from being highly effective in reaching Hallmark s target market, there are several advantages of using radio as a media type. First and foremost, radio reaches light TV viewers. This is ideal for Hallmark because data shows that women age 18-34 had relatively high indexes in the lightest user quintile for primetime and cable TV.

Radio is also an effective medium in obtaining a high frequency. This goes hand in hand with Hallmark s objective of raising frequency levels in order to increase brand consciousness. Another advantage of radio as a medium is flexibility in terms of both time and geographic location. Although radio will be used nationally, geographic flexibility allows Hallmark to utilize spot markets, which play a crucial role in placing emphasis in the Western region.

There are however, some disadvantages involved with using radio that should be noted. First, radio has been criticized for being a background medium and containing fleeting messages. Hallmark will minimize these disadvantages with strong creative. Another disadvantage of radio is that many markets have so many stations that the audience becomes fragmented. Here, Hallmark will minimize fragmentation of its target audience by selecting those radio formats with the highest levels of target market listenership.

Tactics Both network and spot market radio will be used by Hallmark in 2001 accounting for % of the total media budget which is $136,884. From that total, $64,572 will be used for network while $73,312 will go to spot market radio. Hallmark has selected Adult Contemporary as the format in which the ads will be aired. This format has been selected because it was found to be the most popular format among the target market (SMRB). Spots for network radio will be purchased Monday through Friday as well both Saturday and Sunday. The daypart the ads will run in will be from 6 a.m. to midnight for weekday as well as weekends. This daypart has been chosen because research reveals that 93% (21 million) of women in the target market listen to radio between 6 a.m. and midnight (SMRB). For local markets, Hallmark has selected the Los Angeles area to run ads Monday through Friday. The Los Angeles market has been chosen because it represents an ideal metropolitan west coast locale.

Table 1.

Radio Daypart Cost per spot Total Cost

Network Mon.-Fri 6 a.m.-mid $ 2,348 $ 28,176

Sat.-Sun 6 a.m.-mid $ 3,033 $ 36,396

Local Mon.-Fri 6-10 a.m. $ 3,199 $ 38,388

Mon.-Fri 3-7 p.m. $ 2,827 $ 33,924


$ 136,884


Strategy From January through September 1999, magazine expenditures for Hallmark Greeting Card ranked second highest among all media vehicles used. Magazine quintiles for women age 18-34 found they are 16% more likely to be heavy users of magazines. Quintile index also found women age 18-34 are also more likely than the average woman to be the second highest users of magazines (SMRB). This makes magazines an excellent media type to reach the 22.4 million in the target market.

Magazines have many advantages that satisfy the needs of Hallmark s media objectives. Since magazines appeal to a very select audience, Hallmark has chosen its vehicles to directly reach the target market. Today, there are many individual and specialized magazines that appeal to all types of people (there are currently over 20,000 magazines in circulation). The result being Hallmark can further reach the more defined target market of women age 18-34 who are employed full or part time, or are full time students.

Magazines are able to reproduce an advertisement that has excellent color quality, which enhances the strength of the message. Also, magazines have a very high pass-along audience, which increases the ad exposure over time. This will not only aid in meeting reach objectives but also allow Hallmark to continue to build product reach long after the campaign formally ends. In addition, magazines have controlled circulation, which maximizes the ability to specifically reach the 22.8 million in the target audience and minimize waste.

Unfortunately, magazines are no different from other media in that they do present some disadvantages. First, magazines are somewhat limited in terms of geographic flexibility. Another challenge facing the use of magazines are early closing dates. Many magazines require the ad be placed several months in advance, which can make the ad seem dated. The fact that most magazines are published monthly can yield a lack of immediacy. It should also be mentioned that even with a great print advertisement, Hallmark faces the challenge of breaking through the clutter within a magazine since advertisements account for 70% of magazine content. Despite these challenges, high selectivity, quality reproduction, long life, and high pass-along audience make magazines an excellent medium to deliver Hallmark s message.

Tactics As a result of the effectiveness of magazines to reach the target market, magazines will account for $ of the total media budget , or %. Hallmark has selected seven national consumer magazines. Six of the magazines are monthly publications, which include Cosmopolitan, Glamour, Good Housekeeping, Mademoiselle, Redbook, and Woman s Day. The seventh magazine, Soap Opera Digest, is a weekly publication. Hallmark will place full-page, four-color ads in all of the magazines with the exception of Cosmopolitan. Cosmo will alternate months continuously with Good Housekeeping throughout the year with ads being placed on the back cover. For ratings, as well as cost per spot, number of insertions, and total cost per vehicle, refer to Table 2. The magazines were all selected as the result of high readership of the target market (SMRB).

Table 2.

Magazine Rating Cost per spot # of Insertions Total Cost

Cosmopolitan 24.9 $ 156,600 6 $ 939,600

Glamour 20.7 $ 99510 6 $ 597,060

Good Housekeeping 18.6 $ 192,260 6 $1,153,560

Mademoiselle 10.9 $ 56,666 7 $ 396,662

Redbook 13.1 $ 88,000 4 $ 352,000

Woman s Day 16.9 $ 165,315 2 $ 330,630

Soap Opera Digest 13.4 $ 31,355 8 $ 250,840

Soap Opera Weekly 8.6 $ 11,040 8 $ 88,320


Strategy The third media that Hallmark will utilize is newspaper. Newspapers have long been the main media source for information. Today, this medium now battles with local cable, radio, and magazines for a share of advertisers expenditures. Reports show that in 1999, from January through September, a total of $57,000 was spent in newspaper advertisements solely by Hallmark Greeting Cards.

In relation to the recommended target market, newspaper quintiles show that women age 18-34 are 18% more likely to be heavy users of newspapers. The quintile reports that women age 18-34 are 22% more likely to be above average users of newspapers (SMRB).

The use of newspaper is advantageous to meeting the objective s criteria. Newspaper guarantees mass reach within the West region. The brand and category development index for this region is above average. This fact displays excellent sales potential for the Hallmark brand. With newspaper projecting a local emphasis, many of the target market will read the paper to keep up with the events that are taking place. By placing advertising with local events, the impact of non-seasonal purchases will increase. Another benefit of newspaper is the sense of immediacy. The number of daily insertions in the newspaper will accomplish the high frequency objective. Also, newspapers provide editorial association. There are specific sections in the newspaper that focus on the target market recommended.

Disadvantages of newspaper are advertising clutter. Sixty percent of the newspaper is compiled with advertisements. The cost of buying national coverage is extremely high. Since newspapers are usually discarded after having been read, there is a small pass along audience as a result. It is also difficult to coordinate for national buy, but the regions are specific. Newspapers meet the media objectives that must be accomplished, despite the disadvantages they possess.

Tactics Newspapers will account for % of Hallmark s total media budget which is $ . Both national and local newspapers will be used in 2001. The majority of newspaper spending will be national which is $ while local will represent the remaining $ For national, Hallmark has selected USA Today to run in the heavy months (April and November). The local newspaper, the Los Angeles Times, will also run Hallmark ads in these heavy months.

Table 3.

Newspaper Cost per spot # of Insertions Total Cost

USA Today $ 15,000 12 180,000

Los Angeles Times $ 98,721 12 1,184,652


Strategy The final medium in this media plan is outdoor, which has never been used by Hallmark Greeting Cards. While Outdoor will receive the smallest amount of the media budget, it will compliment the other media types nicely. The use of outdoor is a new way to successfully reach the target market and work in conjunction with the media plan.

According to the Outdoor quintile indexes, women age 18-34 are 10% more likely than the average woman to be heavy users and 4% more likely to be above average users. This means the 22.8 million women in the target market are 14% more likely to be heavy or above average users of Outdoor than the average women (SMRB). This makes Outdoor an attractive new way for Hallmark to reach its target audience.

There are several advantages for using Outdoor as a media type. First of all, Outdoor allows delivery to multiple household members simultaneously, as well as potential for high frequency. In addition, Outdoor is a relatively inexpensive medium which can be used to direct people while they are traveling. Outdoor offers excellent geographic flexibility, which again is ideal for concentrating on specific regions (West).

However, a major fallback of Outdoor is the short duration and tendency of messages to be fleeting. Another disadvantage of Outdoor is the high clutter environment in which the advertisement message delivery and limited control over demographic testing are two disadvantages of Outdoor. These factors could have a definite effect towards this media type.



Hallmark will benefit greatly to use a continuous strategy in their advertising. A continuous strategy is beneficial due to the fact that the timing objective is to increase competitive weight levels throughout the year. Hallmark will target all quarters within the calendar year, with most emphasis on the second and fourth quarters. The second quarter was chosen due o the fact that Easter, Mother s Day, Father s Day, graduations, and weddings all fall under these months. The fourth quarter was chosen because of the seasonal holidays.