The relationship between Adform Creative and Virgin Atlantic has developed over the past couple of years to one that is, today, symbiotic and streamlined.
Previously, Virgin used a manual process for ordering promotional items.
Anyone in the company could buy items for their next road show or customer visit. But this presented challenges.
Maintaining inventory, for example, was not on the forefront of peoples’ minds. After an event or project was over, everyone’s focus turned to the next priority. Promo items were boxed-up and stacked-up in a corner somewhere, rarely to be used again. In addition, when Virgin Atlantic offices moved to Atlanta, storage space became an issue.
Beyond the waste of unused items, the company paid higher prices for separate, small-quantity orders.
Similarly, ordering and shipping items took a lot of time. Different people throughout the organization researched, reviewed, ordered, and proofed items. Then they had to ship them to different locations for different events. That’s a lot of work!
Today, everything is streamlined. Adform works with a small group within Virgin’s marketing team to select a range of items and trade-show materials for the organization.
Consolidating orders immediately reduced Virgin’s costs. But there’s more.
Adform maintains all the inventory. They also manage the shipping of promotional items and event materials like pop-up banners, tablecloths, signage, and giveaway items. Through an easy-to-use web store, Virgin field sales reps tell Adform what they need and where they need it. After the event, the reps use a return shipping label to send materials to Adform. Adform puts the items back in inventory for the next event.
“They’re like an extension of our team”
says Michael Anthony, Channel Marketing Manager at Virgin Atlantic. “They handle all the things we don’t have the bandwidth to do. It frees up our time and allows us to focus on our marketing programs.”
Working so closely with Virgin Atlantic gives Adform insight into their client that helps them expand their offering.
“It gives Adform another avenue to provide their expertise. They come up with great ideas—not your typical tchotchke,” says Anthony.
What’s next for Virgin Atlantic? “Event kits,” says Anthony.
“Instead of picking individual items for each event, we will offer our reps pre-programmed kits to streamline the process further.”
The kits will be co-developed with reps and have strategic themes such as wellness, sustainability, London destination, and more.
Of course, with everything becoming so streamlined, it gives Virgin Atlantic better visibility into their spending. “It helps keep each rep and territory manage their budgets,” adds Anthony.