Materials handling supplier Barloworld Handling has launched its most comprehensive marketing campaign in recent years in support of its Hyster brand and to help address the use of Hyster as a generic term for forklifts.

As part of the campaign, Continental Outdoor high-impact billboards featuring Hyster reach stackers have been installed at South Africa's three international airports. The 3D special build at OR Tambo shows a 42 ton Hyster reach stacker holding up a three ton branded container. This concept is continued at Cape Town International and King Shaka where 2D cutouts are used to replicate the OR Tambo special build.

Conceptualised by Johannesburg-based Twins Communications, the campaign is targeted at high-profile businessmen and women to reinforce Hyster's dominant positioning in the logistics, warehousing, handling, building and construction sector, as well as build brand awareness. The campaign also includes advertising on television and in financial publications, business-to-business-campaigns and use of the internet.

The pay-off line "Ask for Hyster by name" is being used throughout, to reinforce brand awareness and address the use of Hyster as a generic term for materials handling equipment.

"Hyster has had such a strong presence in the market for the past 80 years that it has become a category rather than a brand name," says Mark Coles of Barloworld Handling. "Similar to brands like Hoover, Kleenex, Xerox and Band-Aid, it has become the first product people think about when they think of forklifts. While instant brand recognition is flattering and has many benefits, generic brand use may dilute the strength of the brand itself. It is also confusing to uninformed customers.

"We realize that it would be unrealistic to try to prevent the use of Hyster as a generic term and have decided to rather go the pro-active route in protecting the identity of the brand. We need to ensure that the market knows our product and asks for Hyster by name."