Reliable turns up heat with marketing plan

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Pens and magnets are all well and good but Reliable Respiratory wanted to create a buzz with its latest marketing efforts.

The answer: tiny bottles of Tabasco sauce with customized back labels.

"It's a good icebreaker, and I am sure it's not as easily thrown away as a business card or a pen," said company spokesman Stan Hurwitz.

The bottles feature Reliable's name and logo with the slogan "we're hot" printed on a one-inch square label. Sales reps attach the bottles to printed cards with the message "We're hot on compliance and cost containment."

"We had to figure out how to tie 'hot' into what we are doing," said Hurwitz. "Cost containment and compliance is what everybody is talking about, even in Congress."

Reliable Respiratory is no stranger to getting its name out in front of the public. The provider of CPAP, nebulizers and oxygen currently has a "CPAP Road Tour" traveling across Massachusetts and Rhode Island (see HME News, April 2011).

"If you are doing the same services as others, and offering the same products, how do you get peoples' attention?" said Hurwitz.

The provider had about 700 of the bottles personalized. Hurwitz said the cost was only a little more than the cost of ordering pens, but because the bottles are having a bigger impact, it's well worth it, he said. Case in point: Reliable's inventory supervisor called a vendor in Chicago to place an order.

"The guy in Chicago said, 'Oh, you're the guys with the Tabasco sauce,'" said Hurwitz. "It had popped up from an app on his cell phone." hme