BOULDER, CO (BRAIN)—The 2010 Cycling Guide started arriving in homes of bike shop customers around the country the week of March 15. The annual direct marketing program will reach over a half million cycling consumers from 110 stores in 50 markets. It is also available in ipaper digital form for Web sites and emails.
Participating retailers represent their businesses with 16-, 24- or 32-page Cycling Guides composed of their choices from over 100 product and advocacy pages. Along with many accessory brands, bike vendor support included Cannondale, Cervelo, Felt, Fuji, Gary Fisher, Giant, GT, Specialized, Schwinn, Trek, and Yeti.
The Cycling Guide is a “magalog” combining product/brand messages, along with retailer identity and non-commercial editorial tips on how to buy and use cycling equipment, and better enjoy riding. Costs are shared between shops and their brands.
New for 2010, retailers using the Cycling Guide have more customizing options than ever before. “Now, with our digital workflow, retailers get the individual content and format they want and costs have remained very competitive,” said Seth Smekal, retailer representative at Catalyst Communication, which produces the Cycling Guide.
Responding to retailer requests for increased store personalization and local content, Catalyst Communication produced completely custom full-color covers for 36 editions of the 2010 guide—more than the total number of custom covers in the Cycling Guide’s 24-year history. This allowed dealers to use images of local events, and pictures of their stores or their staff.
“The Cycling Guide improves every year, and this year Catalyst really lapped the field. Our 32-page Guide has a heavy paper, fold-out, full-color map of the bike paths and trails in my area, with 33 cycling events detailed on the back. The Guide always more than pays for itself in sales and now it makes us look like local heroes, too," said Michael Reuter of American Cycling and Fitness in Southeast Michigan.
For retailers promoting their Spring SuperSale, or other Spring event, Catalyst introduced a special removable panel promoting the event on the outside of each Guide. “This option saved many dealers up to 50 percent of postage costs,” said Jason Giguere, another Catalyst retailer representative.
Advocacy content stepped up, too. Mailed Cycling Guides each included a card personalized for the recipient’s senator and space for their name and why they want the government to support cycling. Many retailers also had Guide pages promoting the America Bikes agenda and IMBA.