Allstar Takes Inaugural Marketer of the Year Honors1 Oct, 2009 By: Thomas Haire Response
What a surprise! It's a tremendous honor for our entire company," says Scott Boilen, president of Hawthorne, N.Y.-based Allstar Marketing Group LLC, the winner of the inaugural Direct Response Marketing Alliance (DRMA) Marketer of the Year Award. "This is truly an Allstar award, as we believe it is our team that differentiates us in the direct response business. The other two finalists are such great companies, that it was just an honor to be selected among them. We are thrilled to win!"
Largely due to the wildly successful Snuggie blanket, launched on DRTV the summer of 2008, Allstar earned more than 21 percent of the nearly 1,000 votes cast, edging the two other finalists — Product Partners LLC (marketers of the successful Beachbody line of fitness products) and TELEBrands Corp. Boilen accepted the award in front of an overflow crowd at a ceremony and cocktail event on Sept. 14 at Las Vegas' Moon nightclub, located in the Palms Resort & Casino.
The Snuggie, which has sold more than 15 million units in little more than a year on the market, was the driving force behind Allstar's win, but the company also had success with a number of other products in the past year, including the Topsy Turvy Tomato and Bendaroos. Boilen believes that Allstar's products strike a particular chord with consumers. "Our main advantage is that people relate to and understand our products," he contends. "All three of our biggest hit products this year transcended their categories and became household brands. At Allstar, we always look to DRTV to create successful brands, not just a one-off product."
Creating brands has also worked well for the team at Product Partners, where the P90X product — a new, improved version of the company's uber-successful Power 90 fitness program which smashed records earlier this decade — was responsible for much success in the past year. And the third finalist, TELEBrands, is also in the DR-to-brand business, including the Ped Egg, which has earned the company awards of distinction from retailers like Target and CVS.
These three standouts earned finalist status in an industry vote among the top 10 nominees for the DRMA Marketer of the Year Award. During the coming months, each of the 10 nominees will be profiled in the pages of Response. However, these three finalists — and the winner — have truly set themselves apart.
An Allstar Becomes a Champion
With nearly a dozen notable campaigns, Allstar Marketing clearly had a huge year. Its most successful campaigns were for the Snuggie (15.2 million units across direct, online and retail sales), the Topsy Turvy Tomato home gardening product (9.4 million units), and the Bendaroos children's toy product (7.8 million units).
"Snuggie has become a cultural phenomenon by allowing consumers to create their own 'blanket experience' that they can enjoy alone or in social venues," Boilen says. "Bendaroos is bringing playfulness back to the toy category and is already the No. 1 toy product in the country. And Topsy Turvy is redefining active gardening."