D+AS MAGAZINE

FEATURES — Garage Wow Now Launched: Industry Project Seeks Greater Garage Door Awareness

© 2007 Door & Access Systems
Publish Date: Summer 2007
Author: Tom Wadsworth
Page 50


Garage Wow Now Launched
Industry Project Seeks Greater Garage Door Awareness

On April 12 at Expo 2007, DASMA President Rick Sedivy and IDA President Jim Lett announced Garage Wow Now, a new DASMA/IDA-funded national public relations campaign to promote the new garage door products now available.

The site, www.GarageWowNow.com, opened on April 11, promoting the “wow” factor of today’s residential garage doors and openers.

Press Materials Launched

On May 14, a press release announcing the new Web site was mass distributed to the media. The release appeared extensively on the Internet, including at these publication sites: Forbes, E-build, Big Builder, Architect Magazine, Building Online, Replacement Contractor Online, The Plain Dealer (Cleveland), Los Angeles Times, and at television stations in Dallas, Charlotte, N.C., and elsewhere.

On May 22, a “mat release” about the campaign was distributed via the North American Precis Syndicate. This story includes before-and-after home photos that show the dramatic difference made by the new carriage house doors. A mat release, often used by weekly newspapers, is a public relations story that has been designed for immediate placement.

On May 29, 225 press kits were mailed to newspapers in the top 150 markets and to 75 key magazines. Since the deadlines for many publications are often weeks in advance, the success of these efforts won’t be known until later this summer.

Press Tour Targets Top Magazines

From May 30 to June 8, key campaign representatives personally visited the editors of top magazines such as Better Homes & Gardens, Home Improvement & Remodeling, Decorating & Design, The Family Handyman, Old House Journal, Popular Mechanics, Popular Science, Country Living, Woman’s Day Special Interest Publications, This Old House, Remodeling, Builder, Residential Architect, and others.

Gale Steves, former editor-in-chief of Home magazine, participated in the tour as a spokesperson for the campaign. In her 10 years at the helm of a magazine with 1,000,000 readers, Steves built a reputation as an expert on home trends.

Steves was accompanied on the tour by Tom Wadsworth, editor of Door & Access Systems, and Allen Pfenninger, a vice president at Edward Howard & Co., the campaign’s public relations agency.

Web Visits, Sweepstakes Entries

To increase interest in the campaign, the GarageWowNow Sweepstakes offers Web visitors the chance to win a free trip for two to Walt Disney World in Orlando, Fla. The winner will be selected in December.

By the end of May, sweepstakes entries had passed the 1,000 mark, and visitors to the site exceeded 2,500. As publicity increases, these numbers are expected to dramatically increase.

More publicity activities are planned for the remainder of 2007. Major magazines and newspapers will be encouraged to publish stories about the critical role of wind-resistant garage doors, the benefits of professional garage door installation, the trend to keypad kids instead of latchkey kids, and much more.