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Case study: advertising B2B maintenance

Published on 12/20/2018
Categories: Advertising
Case study: advertising B2B maintenance

As every year happens, TAVENGINEERING asked us to create a new advertising billboard.
This year we to promote maintenance services on vacuum furnaces.
The problem of maintenance services, in all commodity fields, is that customers tend to bet, they prefer to risk breaking the product and adjust it only if necessary, rather than performing regular preventive maintenance.

What does justify this risk-taking?
The reason is that we tend to think that the cost of the extraordinary maintenance is minor, or at least equivalent, to that of the preventive maintenance.

It is not easy to break this way of thinking, think of all the e-commerce sites that in the past have tried to sell you an extension to the warranty of the product you were buying: have you ever bought? I never.

Now let's see the creative phases, if you have the patience to read to the end, I will reveal a little secret and a serious mistake not to commit.

Advertising for B2B

Differently from the additional guarantees of consumer products, in B2B we have an advantage from the point of view of communication: the rupture of an industrial machinery not only affects the costs of repair, but also causes lost earnings and delays in deliveries.

The message to be transmitted is therefore: without preventive maintenance you not only risk of spending money on repairs, but you will also have to deal with major damage caused by the machine downtime.

Well! Now for the advertising poster we need an explanatory image and a title of few words.

The idea was to combine industrial production with the concept of toy, that is, the fact that it can not be tackled as if it were a playful activity. The risk is not allowed.
That's how we arrived at Lego bricks.

Phase 1: copywriting

The synthetic and explanatory headline is:

Why cry twice?

We like to limit the descriptive text to the magic number of 3 sentences:

  1. Main message (extension of the headline).
  2. TAVENGINEERING solution for the advertised service (preventive maintenance).
  3. TAVENGINEERING solution if you have made the mistake of not using it (corrective maintenance).

Here is the result:

Preventive maintenance avoids both unplanned downtime and expenses for extraordinary repairs.
TAVENGINEERING provides maintenance services that drive down the operating costs of your vacuum furnaces.
In case of emergency, TAVENGINEERING rapidly repairs furnaces of all brands and models, tackling the root-cause of the problem.

I promised you a little secret, here it is.
In this fast-paced world we have become accustomed not to read the texts or read them in a very approximate way. We read only the titles while "we fly with our eyes” over the descriptions, pausing at best on the bold text. Here, then, that even the bold, read alone, must have a complete sense to be assimilated by the brain.
In our case, if you try to read only the bold text of the descriptive text you get: preventive maintenance of vacuum furnaces of all brands and models.
This is a secret eh, do not say it around!

Phase 2: design of the vacuum furnace

To make the vacuum furnace with the Lego we needed a bill of all the needed bricks. That's why before we even buy a single brick, we have designed the industrial plant with a CAD developed by Lego. If you want to have fun and try it, you can download it here.

CAD design

Now that we had a list of all the necessary pieces, we started buying them.
It was harder than expected, we had to rely on many suppliers, Lego in Italy does not have official stores to order specific pieces, it only has branded authorized stores. As if this were not enough, Lego in Denmark sells single pieces via the website, but only to educational centers or individuals.
To make it short, it took 2 months to get all the pieces we needed.

Step 3: mounting the furnace

There is little to say, building the vacuum furnace was the funniest phase.

Building the Lego furnace

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Phase 4: photography and graphic design

We took a photo of the furnace.


Finally we put it in front of two twins who cry (why cry twice, remember?).


Was it difficult to find twins?
Obviously not, that’s the same child photographed twice.

Always in line with the idea of child play, for the lettering we used a sketch font, that is a character that seems to be drawn approximately with a pencil.

The poster was made in various languages and the graphics used in specialized magazines.

We designed various exhibition stands, for example the following one.

Exhibition stand

We also designed an anti-stress rubber brick to be gifted at fairs.

Lego gadget

Phase 5: web advertising

The last step was to create banner ads for the web.
But be careful not to do one common mistake: communicating on the web is completely different.
While in traditional advertising we can afford creativity, puns and double meanings, in web marketing they are to be avoided in the most absolute way. On the web, in fact, people pay very low attention to the messages, even lower than in the printed paper, so you have to be extremely direct.

That's why we eliminated the headline that played on the combination of "cry twice" and the twins who cry.
We left the image of the Lego oven and one single child, which together have enough appeal to capture the attention. The headline without double direction has become:

Prevention is better than repairing

Display advertising 

If you are reading this article in December (when I published it), I take this opportunity to show you the Christmas graphics we made and wish you Happy Holidays!

Happy Holidays


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