International B-to-B, Gold Award: Black Box, 2000 (Brazil)

To give a sense of the impression that Black Box’s Brazilian catalog made on judges, here are a few quotes: “Black Box has done everything possible to make its book easy to use — no easy feat given its more than 1,300 pages of networking products.” “If you are a cataloger carrying a vast amount of items, you should look to this book as an example.”

Indeed, the judging panel heaped the praise on this catalog of computer networking products and services. In discussing the merchandising, one judge said, “What’s most impressive is the vast selection within the various categories,” with multiple solutions to fit any business’s needs. Considering the magnitude of merchandise, judges were in awe of the precise organization that allows for easy perusal. As one judge noted, “Having a large selection presents greater merchandising challenges, but this company really overcomes them.” For instance, callouts illuminate distinctive product features. Color-coded headers on the product pages are keyed to the carefully plotted table of contents. And the navigational footers at the bottom of each page — similar to the “breadcrumbing” found on many Websites — prevents readers from getting lost amid the welter of pages.

The copy, said one judge, “provides relevant information without overselling or being too pushy.” Another said, “I can picture this catalog becoming the networking specialist’s Bible — something you hold on to and refer to all year round.”

Additionally, the prices are easy to find and displayed prominently to ensure customers of Black Box’s value. And customer service is evidently a priority for the company. Judges liked the same-day shipping (“one of the more impressive features,” said a panelist), the excellent guarantee, and the technical support.

When you bring a catalog brand to another country, said the panelists, the marketing concept must be precisely honed and carefully implemented. By delivering breadth and depth of merchandise and information to create a book designed for longevity, this Brazilian edition is certainly an economically viable vehicle, said a judge. Another added, “The marketing goal is clear, and everything about the catalog positions it to be the best technical resource.”

This catalog really has its market cornered. The layout, the copy, the product depiction, and the customer service show that Black Box puts the customer first. In short, this hardworking resource combines all the elements to make it the authority for the networking industry — not to mention a Gold Award winner.

Black Box Corp.
Av. Guido Caloi, 1935
Bloco B-058140-120 Sao Paulo SP Company founded: 1976
Catalog founded: 1994
Director: Prudence Harris
Marketing manager: Andréa
de Moraes Ferreira
Printer: Taller Uno
Cover paper: 250 grams
Text paper: 51 grams
Number of pages: 1,360
Trim size: 8-3/8″ × 10-7/8″

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