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Interesting Direct Marketing Promotion wins Awards

Arc Shows How a Website Can Get Kids Active

CHICAGO, IL -- Arc Worldwide won four marketing awards, more than any other agency, for its work on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's (CDC) VERB YELLOWBALL campaign at the 2007 Reggie Awards last week.

Arc's CDC team took home Gold for best Cause Marketing campaign of the year, Silver for Kids Marketing campaign of the year, Silver for Target, Local or Regional campaign of the year and Bronze for Consumer Promotion of the year.

"We are thrilled that the Promotion Marketing Association has recognized this groundbreaking program by the Arc-CDC team," said William Rosen, chief creative officer, North America, of Arc Worldwide. "The success of VERB YELLOWBALL is the result of an inspired creative idea that leveraged user-generated content to create a true viral phenomenon. It is a rare team that could execute a program so flawlessly across all media."

The Arc-CDC team created one of the most ambitious campaigns in marketing history to combat childhood obesity and inspire tweens to get -- and stay -- physically active. Arc launched VERB YELLOWBALL in November 2005 by recruiting almost 1,000 tweens to distribute yellow balls around the country. They encouraged their peers to play with the balls and pass them onto other kids.

Using the Web to Get Kids Active

Each of the 500,000 yellow balls had a unique code number and instructions that sent kids to a microsite ( where they could enter the code and blog about what they did with the ball. The code also allowed them to see where the ball had been before them and track their ball once they passed it on.

This generated an endless chain letter of play. VERB started it but kids controlled it.

The YELLOWBALL microsite became the hub of the program. It was the place where kids could tell their stories, meet celebrities who touched the ball, enter contests and even earn iTunes for passing the ball along. Kids waiting to receive a ball could mix an online YELLOWBALL video, and then send it to friends.

One of the Most Ambitious Campaigns in Marketing History

VERB used every point of contact to draw kids into the program and stress the importance of physical activity.

--  Arc and the CDC created interactive projections in malls and movie
    theaters, where kids could kick, hit and pass virtual yellow balls
    projected onto floors. The projections, sensing kids' actions, moved when
    the kids moved, generating a virtual ball game.
--  Street performers demonstrated activities with the ball.
--  School and community programs challenged kids to come up with ideas to
    play with the ball.
--  Television, print and online media drove constant awareness. Media
    partners created unique public service announcements and games.


--  More than 5 million kids touched YELLOWBALL, either literally or
    virtually, and nearly 6 million have visited since the
    YELLOWBALL launch.
--  Kids created nearly 17,000 blogs and 170,000 online videos.
--  The campaign reached nearly 7,000 schools.
--  Kids attended nearly 3,000 events and ran 330,000 obstacle courses.
--  Whereas the average direct response rate for marketing campaigns is
    one to three percent, an overwhelming 10 percent of kids touched by
    YELLOWBALL visited the site and blogged.
--  One ball was passed 31 times and another traveled 39,940 miles.

The Reggie Awards, sponsored by the Promotion Marketing Association, recognize outstanding promotional marketing campaigns in the United States in 14 categories. Now in their 27th year, the Reggie Awards are the elite standard of recognition for promotional marketing professionals.

About Arc Worldwide

Arc Worldwide, a Publicis Groupe company and Leo Burnett Worldwide's marketing services partner, changes consumer behavior and drives transactions by delivering multisensory campaigns that cross numerous channels: interactive, promotional, retail and database direct marketing. Since its founding in 2004, the company has won 300 marketing awards around the world and been heralded as a "pioneer on the frontier of marketing" for its ability to engage consumers through new mediums. All Arc campaigns create a "value exchange," an interaction of mutual value for the marketer and consumer with the goal of leading the consumer down the path to purchase.


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