Staples’ “That Was Easy” brand makes another convert (me)

Ok, folks, I’ll admit that this post is partly a “hey there, I’m not dead” note — I’ve been crazy busy in my personal and professional life and haven’t posted in a few weeks — but I did want to share with you a simple, sweet marketing tactic I just encountered which had a real impact on my personal spending behavior.

A few days ago, I was cruising around the Web aimlessly (I think on ZDNet, though I’m not sure) and somehow encountered a banner ad for pitching a discount coupon.

Since I’ve become a fan of the site and store of late, I clicked, expecting to spend at least a bit of time filling out some sort of tiresome form or enduring some pitch.

Guess what — I didn’t.

When I clicked on the banner, the ad triggered my PC’s printer driver. When OK’d the print job, my system immediately printed out a nice little $15-off coupon usable either online or in one of the Staples stores. Since I’ve been meaning to buy an office chair in the $100 range, that’s a meaningful discount which pretty much ties up much decision to buy there.

Not only did this “cut to the chase” approach deliver exactly what I needed, which certainly can’t hurt, you can’t beat this as a way to reinforce Staples’ whole “That Was Easy” brand online. As the coupon printed, those three words came into my head unbidden; I don’t know if the ads got to me or that was just how I felt, which I guess could be said to be the magic of a strong brand! All I can say is “high five, Staples!”

Meanwhile, if you’d like to learn more about some of Staples’ other online strategies, you might enjoy this Promo article from December 2007. As you’ll see, the office giant’s “That Was Easy” widget seems to be quite a hit.

P.S. By the way, stay tuned for a review of, a really interesting site which makes it easy to promote events virally using social media and other traditional Internet technologies. Here at WhatMattersOnline Labs we’re giving it a thorough look and will report back shortly.

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One response to “Staples’ “That Was Easy” brand makes another convert (me)

  1. Kudos to Staples for finding that right balance between in your face and drawing you in. The guerrilla tactic posting an ad on screen for a certain amount of time before going away no doubt alienates me more than it draws me, with my attention drifting off elsewhere until my desired content eventually presents itself for my viewing.

    I’d have to bet the subtle branding approach is key to getting that almighty click through–because being familiar with a brand in the first place will more likely draw you in, and make you more willing to investigate a deal they have to offer. Brilliant that Staples strategy got them what they wanted–the sale–and continued to bolster the branding that was already established.

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