Major offline advertising firm Valassis is "going where the consumers are" and repositioning itself to rely heavily on an online portal site called RedPlum.com. Valassis has been known primarily for coupons, direct mail messages and for putting ads directly on the polybags protecting newspapers, but starting this January it will retire its ShopWise brand name and shift gears, according to Suzie Brown, chief marketing officer for Valassis.
"Consumer media habits have changed dramatically over the past five years, and we've primarily been an offline medium," she said of her company's move to an online portal. "Our whole goal is to deliver value to consumers how, where and when they want."
To drive consumers to the site, however, the company is still relying on its offline advertising expertise, as all of its products will now include references to the RedPlum Web site. The site will contain product information, coupons and ads for local and nationwide businesses, many of which will be updated by widgets built into the site. Unlike other widgets, the RedPlum versions will have a limited ability to be grabbed and replicated on a consumers Web page or social network page.
"There will be some features and functionality that allows people to share content from our site with others. If I want to take a coupon and send it to my mom, because it's something that I think she will use, I can do that," Brown said.
Brown declined to specifically name any of the company's partners for the RedPlum rebranding and launch, but did say there will be a "Fair amount of travel content on the site."
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