Enemies of Comfort Don't Stand a Chance

March 6, 2006
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Bryantman gets a few practice shots in on Bone Chiller, one of the villains of comfort during a commercial shoot.
LAS VEGAS - A new comfort Superhero joined with some recognized superstars in the glitz and glamour of the 2nd Bryant Heating and Cooling Systems National Dealer Meeting. With perhaps the biggest marketing splash seen in years, Bryant announced the creation of Bryantman, a new advertising concept that represents Bryant dealers as a superhero to the consumer and trade markets.

The concept has been under wraps since the summer of 2005 when executives at Bryant, MARC USA (Bryant's advertising agency), and Hollywood-famed designer Stan Winston began exploring the possibilities of creating a representation of the important role played by the Bryant dealer network.

More than 3,000 Bryant dealers, territory managers, and distributors gathered at the Rio Casino Resort in Las Vegas, Feb. 28–Mar. 3 to view the company's offerings in the new 13 SEER world.

Attendees participated in programs throughout the meeting and viewed resources during a two-day trade show also held at the resort. The convention officially kicked off Tuesday, Feb. 28, with the spotlight on the main stage as Bryant unveiled its new product line. The Bryant trade show, which opened Wednesday evening and continued Thursday afternoon, was jam-packed with products and business support programs available for dealers. However, the Bryantman announcement was by far the primary buzz at the event.

According to Ron Sullivan, senior vice-president creative director at MARC USA, "The current advertising slogan, ‘Whatever It Takes,' spawned a challenge from the people at Bryant to boldly take advantage of Bryant's unique branding position. The company has always differentiated itself with its dealercentric message rather than its great product attributes, and they wanted something brave and different."

Kevin Dudash, Bryant brand manager said, "We weren't looking for an ad campaign, we were looking for something much bigger. The basic idea is of a dealer who transforms into a super hero because of his passion for what he does. It transcends ad campaigns; it's much more than a slogan.

"The dealers are really the comfort heroes who deal with people under duress because of hot weather or cold weather. In the consumers' eyes, they are a hero, and the dealer really does save the day for them. The concept fits the nature of what our dealers are doing every day as they represent Bryant to the consumer," said Dudash.

Bryantman casts a pose on the set while shooting the creation of the first series of commercials featuring the new HVAC industry superhero.

CREATING AN ICON

Stan Winston is one of the most famous make-up and creature effects artists in the industry today. His work includes "Terminator"; "Terminator 2: Judgment Day"; "Aliens" (Queen); "Predator"; "Predator 2"; "Edward Scissorhands"; "Batman Returns" (Penguin); "Interview With a Vampire"; and many other films.

In addition to Bryantman, characters were created to represent the villains of comfort. Scorcher and Bone Chiller are the first two nemeses of Bryantman that will appear in advertising as he fights to protect homeowners.

According to those at the national meeting, the campaign has the potential to be long lasting through national consumer TV and radio. Major face-lifts for the Bryant Website and the entire advertising campaign were timed with the launch of Bryantman. The company is seeking to create a memorable icon that will stand out in the industry and be remembered by consumers. In support of this effort, advertising kits are currently being distributed to Bryant dealers and information on Bryantman appearances will be forthcoming.

"A superhero is the guy who would have the best of everything - the latest products, the best service - but most of all, he would be there when you need him the most. He would exceed your expectations. ‘Whatever it takes' is being taken to the next level. During the day Bryantman is an ordinary Bryant dealer, and in times of need he rises to the occasion. That's what Bryant dealers do; we have people who really care rather than only focus on the product sale. That's what a superhero is all about, doing whatever it takes to make customers comfortable" said Dudash.

Another twist during the meeting was the announcement of Bryantman's trusty sidekick. The company started in 1904, and the major character in one of Bryant's first ad campaigns was a small dog - Pup - back in the 1930s. "Bryant is bringing back the Pup in a new and very cool high-tech way," said Gino Tomaro, MARC USA management supervisor.

Complete Bryant meeting details in a future issue of The NEWS.

For more information on Bryant, visit www.bryant.com.

Publication date: 03/06/2006

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