Maginus's stated aim is to achieve "dominance in the aggressive and fast moving multi-channel retail and distribution markets".
From its origins as a mail order software company Maginus has recently pioneered the new Multi Channel Commerce (MCC) software solution. Its products help retailers as well as wholesalers to sell to their customers across more than one channel while improving customer service and controlling costs. Maginus solutions are provided through a range of software products, some developed in-house and others based upon Microsoft Dynamics AX.
The company therefore faced competition from other Dynamics AX distributors with a need to establish its own brand differential. Maginus had recently put in place a new corporate identity featuring a multi-coloured 'swoosh' and messaging built around Maginus giving customers the "power to grow their business." Anecdotal evidence however showed that amongst retailers in particular, the company was still less well known than some competitors, with little knowledge in the market of Maginus's innovation, technical leadership and 'can do' attitude to its client's requirements. Maginus customers tend to be positive and forward thinking early adopters. Instead of retrenching in the current market , they embrace the changing buying habits of their customers and seek to turn them to their advantage through MCC. They are successful because they think differently. Maginus offers the perfect match for retailers like these but too many of them were unaware of this.
Axongarside created an avatar - a multi-channel guru who would be Maginus's public face: My Genius, literally brought the brand 'to life'; emotionally engaging employees, influencers, customers and potential customers.
"...a jealous work colleague swiped the little guy when my back was turned" Scott Thompson Retail Systems
My Genius's name is a play on Maginus and reflects its thought leadership. He was designed to incorporate the Maginus swoosh in his colouring and details like the flow of his hair and the swoosh trail left behind him when he moves. This is symbolic of Maginus solutions which run throughout a client's business to link front and back office functions as well as multiple sales channels.
Like Maginus, with its approachable style, customers want to get closer to My Genius and hold him in their hands.
"My Genius is absolutely superb..., please, please can we have one?" Coachwise Ltd
Media and Execution
My Genius was executed through CGI and a specially manufactured model. He has appeared on trade show stands, in print advertising, direct mail, his own website, microsites and newsletters, guides which lead retailers through the new world of multi-channel retailing, ebooks and throughout the Maginus offices, where 'My Store' has been created to demonstrate the breadth of the Maginus offer. A viral My Genius game is currently under development and the campaign is ongoing.
My Genius was launched in April 2009 at a number of industry events, supported by advertisements in selected trade publications and targeted mailing pieces. Advertising showed successful retailers and distributors who when asked the secret of their success, reveal "My Genius" as their answer with the headline "My Genius is helping me to grow my business".
The very visual nature of the concept created the opportunity to make effective use of direct mail. Gaining attention for our message being so much easier if you don't have to rely on the subject line of an email alone, like so many of Maginus's competitors. Print mail has been combined with emails andb espoke landing pages to boost response.
The model has given us the chance to get My Genius (and Maginus) into people's offices. Sent to a carefully selected database in a branded tube with a message card to accompany him he has been the centre of a successful 3D mailer campaign. He has actually worked as a physical viral.
"...a colleague of mine has one of your mascots and I was wondering if you could send me one please? It is brilliant - you should sell them" email from prospect company
Campaigns now drive response to the new My Genius website which has been designed to engage visitors as much as possible. There is the facility to 'Livechat' with My Genius and other interactive features such as video linked to My Genius's YouTube channel and an area for recipients of a My Genius model to upload photographs.
"One of the most effective tech supplier advertising/promotional programmes I've seen in some time - distinctive, fresh and inventive" Retail Systems magazine
Although no formal research has been undertaken to assess the overall effectiveness of My Genius, pipeline is 50 per cent bigger than last year and £1.9m of business has been written as a result of My Genius campaigns. This is many times the amount spent in his development and execution. The metrics from all campaigns are significantly up:
Like for like 30 per cent more leads from trade shows
Higher opening rates from email campaigns up 24 per cent
The Ivy event: 129 companies were targeted, 5 ofthese companies are now in the sales pipeline
The new website began generating leads within three weeksof launch with visitors spending twice as long on site as they did on the previous
"We wanted something really different to help us to stand out from our competition. axongarside came with My Genius and surpassed all our expectations. The response from our staff, our customers and in fact the whole market has been phenomenal. We are delighted." Russell Dorset, sales and marketing director, Maginus.