Valpak TV Campaign Pairs With IHOP, Twentieth Century Fox

Sometimes, even direct marketers need to use a little television to promote themselves. For a promotional tie-in with Twentieth Century Fox and IHOP Restaurants, Valpak--the coupons-by-mail company with signature blue envelopes--will undertake a $3 million television advertising campaign.

In the coming weeks, Valpak will send promotional packs to 43 million American households. They will contain messaging and pictures promoting the upcoming Fox release, "Horton Hears a Who." The packs will also include details about how to enter a sweepstakes in which the grand prize is a year's worth of IHOP family dinners.

Some packs will have randomly inserted $25 gift certificates, and the signature blue envelope can be redeemed at IHOP for a free kids' meal or free short-stack of buttermilk pancakes. The promotion will be touted through a television advertising campaign, says Deanna Willsey, Valpak's director of communications.

"We've always had media exposure with our promotions," Willsey tells Marketing Daily. "With this campaign, we'll be running our regular advertising commercials with special tags that talk about the promotion."

The promotion marks the seventh time the film studio has partnered with Valpak for an on-envelope promotion, and it is the second time the company has brought a restaurant chain in as well. (The first time was in 2004 for the release of "Spider Man 2," which included Burger King, according to Willsey.)

IHOP was already a promotional partner for the movie, but coming together with Valpak made sense because of a strong "demographic fit," Willsey says. According to the company, research showed that households who use Valpak coupons were 24% more likely than the average U.S. consumer to list IHOP has their top family restaurant.

Such three-way promotions create "an extra added level of excitement" for Valpak, Willsey says, and they are likely to continue. "Movies, television, restaurants. Everything we can do to add excitement every month benefits our brand and our partners," she says.

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