ARATEX / ARAMARK PR Case Study
ARATEX Uniform Services (now ARAMARK Uniform Services)
Event marketing campaign for ARATEX Uniform Services.
ARATEX Uniform Services is a national organization with 150 processing plants serving more than 400,000 business customers. Automotive is their largest market segment, comprised of auto dealers, independent garages, tire stores, muffler shops, gas stations and auto parking operators. Uniform programs are a low-involvement category and brand loyalty is uncommon. With a limited sales force, ARATEX needed a program that facilitated relationship building and customer retention.
Matt McConaughy of ARATEX awards A.J. Foyt the “best dressed” pit crew award for his team’s uniforms.
Sharing costs with local ARATEX regional offices to ensure a high level of sales and management support.
Track safety crews wore ARATEX sponsored uniforms enhancing brand visibility throughout the race-day.
Advertorial focused on how uniforms are used to create “Teams” was placed at no charge in Indy Car Racing programs.
Over 20 pages of “free” advertising were attained with this prepared advertorial based on safety apparel uniforms.
Major advertisers use the race team uniforms as a branding opportunity, this advertorial tells the story.
Track signage supports brand awareness goals along with print advertising that runs in the race-day programs.
Retain customers and develop new relationships with potential customers.
- The main strategy was to leverage the excitement of Indy Car Racing and to make ARATEX a big name. Receive exposure for this single event that comes to a number of major metropolitan areas once a year.
- Invite ARATEX customers and prospects to Indy Car Races where ARATEX had strong coverage.
- Share the cost of hosting a hospitality tent with the local management to assure a high level of local support and participation from sales and management personnel.
- Provide racetrack safety crews with ARATEX uniforms free of charge to increase visibility for the brand. This was done wherever and whenever it was possible.
- Host a “Best Dressed Pit Crew” competition that was judged by local media personalities and with awards given to their favorite race team. The Young Company public relations team hand selected the judges for the competition.
- Prepare two-page full color advertorials on subjects such as “Team Building”, “Brand Building” and “Uniform Safety” which were placed in race-day programs. Young Company researched, wrote, designed and produced each advertorial.
- This was the single best customer retention and new business program in ARATEX’s 20-year history according to Director of Marketing Matt McConaughy and others associated with the program.
- Customer retention improved nearly 10% compared to previous years.
- An average of five new customers signed up with multi-year contracts at each racing venue each season the program ran.
- More than $150,000 in free advertising space was generated each year during a three year span from the inclusion of the ARATEX sponsored advertorial.
- Numerous PA (public address) announcements were made throughout the race days when ARATEX sponsored the “Best Dressed” pit crew competitions.
- The ARATEX advertorial was often deemed the most interesting article in the race-day magazine.
- The advertorial listed the direct phone number of ARATEX’s Vice President of Marketing who received dozens of calls as a result. ARATEX achieved 93% total brand awareness among the target audience of uniform service decision makers according to an independent survey.
- ARATEX became the market leader during this time, dominating the uniform service category in terms of growth, market share and profitability.
- In the words of famous racecar driver and team manager A.J. Foyt when he received his team’s price for having the best-dressed pit crew, “Where did you guys come from? You guys are everywhere!”