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Schick revved Quattro with sampling

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Schick is wrapping up a workplace sampling effort for Quattro for Women that caps a launch year full of tour dates, sampling flights and tongue-in-cheek premiums that play up the razor's high-performance roots.

This month, Schick gives away 200,000 razors to women at work in Chicago, New York City, Philadelphia and San Francisco. Sampling teams stationed in high-traffic areas outside office buildings give away full-size razors and branded 2006 calendar/planners that bear the headline "Shaving Your Way to Success in 2006" and carry humorous survival techniques for each month.

The sampling push follows a six-month "Hands Off" retail tour that brought Quattro for Women to 10 markets.

Since its spring launch, Quattro's positioning has turned the tables on an old problem: women "borrowing" their guy's razor for a better shave. So Quattro promotions- by Colangelo Synergy Marketing- fun by warning men to keep their hands off women's high-tech Quattro.

Quattro for Women hit stores in April with the feel of a race-car launch: Ads drove women to to request a sample and "owner's manual." The site, which launched Feb. 1, garnered four million hits and maxed out its supply of 115,000 sample razors in its first month (April 5 Xtra)

The June-through-November "Hands Off" tour gave away booklets demonstrating defense moves (to keep guys from the razor), with high-value coupons. Tour teams hosted retail stops during the day, then sampled at night near clubs and bars, targeting women 18-34. Tour markets included Boston, Chicago, Dallas, Detroit, Los Angeles, Miami, New York City, Philadelphia and Phoenix.

Summer sampling also targeted women at spas, gyms, sports stadiums and concert venues. Innova Marketing, Minneapolis, handled sampling for the December workplace push and the summer flight.

"Short of sampling at home in the shower, we look to find unconventional ways to reach high-performance women," said Senior Brand Manager Cindy Abella. "We seek out non-traditional sampling venues ... to interact with our target consumer. We're not just sampling the product, we're delivering the brand message and delivering a voice through branded collateral and humorous calendars. Our goal is to balance always being unexpected while remaining relevant."

"Every time we hand out a razor, we want to hand out branded collateral with the brand's voice," said Jessica Branson, account supervisor at Darien, CT-based Colangelo Synergy Marketing.

Also this summer, an offer on 150,000 Quattro packages carried codes for five free music downloads via Universal Music Group (July 20 Xtra) A July tie-in with Lady Foot Locker gave away Qro for Women razors as a gift with purchase when shoppers bought sneakers.

Quattro's total sales hit $29.2 million for razors (up about 24%) and $41.2 million for blades (down about 3%) for the 48 weeks ended Nov. 27, per Information Resources, Inc. IRI doesn't break out Quattro for Women sales, but does cover all men's and women's varieties, including Quattro Midnight and Quattro Power.

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