Leading the Army Strong Campaign

What does it mean to be Army Strong?

As the Director of Marketing I had numerous responsibilities.

Responsibilities included:

  • managing a budget that for FY07-FY09 was as much as $450 million per year,
  • developing a more integrated campaign in order to produce cost efficiencies,
  • managing three divisions and an operations section (details below),
  • working with an advertising agency with offices in New York City, Chicago, Minneapolis, Oakland and Los Angeles,
  • overseas communications plan to make sure public relations are integrated into new advertising and digital campaigns as well as outreach events,
  • although not an assigned responsibility we identified that education has become a strategic issue in our country and leveraged our cost efficiencies to shift money into building an alliance with national education organizations.

Advertising Division oversees production of TV commercials, all print products (every product in recruiting stations, direct mail, advertisements, etc), and personal give away items (pens, pencils, coffee mugs, backpacks, etc.).  During FY09 we produced 15 television commercials, 300+ support and web videos, 13 print ads, over 14 million pieces of direct mail, 8 radio ads, over 21 million pieces of collateral (brochures, posters, etc), more than 70 digital banners, and over 175 personal presentation items.  The final advertising campaign I was responsible for was for recruiting officers, an area the Army had not previously invested in outside of West Point and ROTC and never done together.  Through a separate agency we managed a licensing program, the only service to do so, which resulted in over $2 million being raised to benefit Soldiers.

Digital Division oversees all digital advertising, recruiting specific social media and the GOARMY.COM website, with quarterly updates on website costing over $10 million.  In FY2009 we begin to shift our emphasis to digital marketing and for the first time began a campaign to target prospects that were less propensed to join the military, along with their parents, by leveraging an Army astronaut who spent two months on the International Space Station and became the first person to use Twitter from the International Space Station.

Outreach Division oversees all recruiting related events.  Highlights include NASCAR, NHRA, All American Bowl, Spring Break and numerous multicultural events.  Over 200 events annually.  Ever a challenge to produce a program with good ROI we were able to leverage our partnership wth Stewart-Haas Racing to benefit wounded warriors as part of the Prelude to the Dream race.  As part of the program we provided our sponsors with a first hand experience with Soldiers so they could talk about their experiences with authenticity and not from talking points provided by our PR team.  This included Tony Stewart and Tony Schumacher at Fort Knox and Ryan Newman at Fort Bragg.

Operations Section oversees day to day operations, responses to Congressional Inquiries, and coordinating media engagements for the Director of Marketing.