Hard-sell vs. Soft-sell: Which Strategy Pulls Ahead?

Author: LHAWorld Inc.

Date Posted: January 4th, 2011

Buffalo Grove IL-based Safco ­Dental Supply Co. is one of the largest ­family owned distributors of dental supplies in the U.S.  Since 1945 they have set the industry standards for quality, prices, and customer-focused direct mail sales. The quarterly Safco Dental Supply ­Catalog offers over 12,500 products to over 50,000 dental practices across the country. Safco now was ­considering testing a new look for their catalog cover that ­focused on their customer driven philosophy and targeted new prospects. Safco asked LHA/World to help with this initiative.

The ChallengeSafco Covers
The challenge was to effectively communicate the Safco brand and maintain their position as a high-quality low-cost resource, while shifting the design to a more subtle and professional look with a customer-focused soft-sell appeal.

The Solution
In the new design the main cover photo focuses on the customer. The new headline ­maintains the Safco commitment to low pricing and quality service while emphasizing the company history and reputation as a trusted resource. Bulleted copy was added to capture the benefits of trusting your order to Safco. One thing that didn’t change was the focus on the three product offers at the bottom of the page. Showing these carefully-selected ­products and their special pricing remains a solid way of reinforcing the Safco commitment to the best quality products at the best prices.

The Results
As the covers (both the control and the test versions) go to the printer we anxiously await the results. Which do you think will pull the greater response?