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How HPS Group gave livestock vaccination campaign a shot in the rump

By Adam Poole, account manager

March 31, 2016 | 4 min read

One of the great things about working in the marketing industry is the wide range of campaigns that you’re asked to work on.

Adam Poole is an account manager with HPS Group.

Adam Poole is an account manager with HPS Group.

For example, Zoetis, a leading global animal health company supporting livestock producers recently tasked HPS Group with creating a fully integrated digital marketing campaign to encourage dairy and beef farmers and vets to vaccinate their calves against Pneumonia (BRD). A key goal for Zoetis was to change the perception of vaccines, moving away from a focus on cost and disease towards how vaccination can improve production and gain, e.g. highlighting the link between good respiratory health and calf performance.

For the initial stage of this campaign which ran in 2014, HPS Group created the innovative web tool 'Plan to Protect'. This site, the first of its kind in the industry, provided users with a personalised report on the potential financial risk of not vaccinating their herds.

Through the original Plan to Protect campaign, there was initially a great deal of engagement with the site, yet once the visitor received the information on how the cost of the disease would affect their herd, there was a large drop off, meaning vital personal details were not captured. This offered a key opportunity for development in the new campaign, which we rebranded 'Plan to Produce' to support the new communications focus while building on the recognition factor of the previous campaign. By shifting the focus from protection against disease to calf production we hoped to motivate famers to engage with the content.

The new and improved website and supporting social media campaign went live in September 2015 with the key message: Early vaccination can help maximise a calf’s lifetime productivity, making it a good financial investment.

In the new campaign, we simplified the value exchange by reducing the content on the main site and increasing the amount of invaluable information received in the bespoke PDF download. With focus shifted from disease protection to calf production, the visitor had a much greater incentive to submit personal details online.

Taking into consideration the rise in smartphone and tablet adoption being seen within the farming community, we streamlined content to only one page, optimising the site for mobile use. The visitor was led through the process in three quick and easy steps, motivated to enter personal details in order to be rewarded with a personalised plan. The site was as customer-centric as possible, enabling each visitor to better understand the role of vaccination in calf health and encourage them to follow up with their vet.

As a result of the subtle strategic changes between the ‘protect’ and produce’ phases of the campaign, we more than doubled the conversion rate. In 2014, only 3.72 per cent of people clicked through to register their details. With Plan to Produce, we increased form fills to 8.39 per cent. In addition, the simplified design of the Plan to Produce site led to a substantial increase of almost 40 per cent in tablet and mobile traffic on the previous year.

We were also proud to win the New Media award at the VMAs – no, not the MTV one – the Veterinary Marketing Association awards for our work on the ‘Plan to Produce’ campaign, a true indicator of the value of building on your previous good work when shifting the strategic emphasis of a campaign.

Adam Poole is an account manager with HPS Group.

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