skip to Main Content
BC-logo2
BC-response-header-copy

In early October of this year, New York Life issued a RFI/RFQ in search of a creative agency that can provide Online and Offline creative development services.

BlueCozmos is pleased to be part of this effort and has responded by supplying information in the excel file as requested. However, as many responses require visuals, we created this page to showcase our work.

Thank you for your review, and we look forward to any next steps.

New York Life's
Question
BlueCozmos
Response

Supportive Data

1. Does your agency provide concept, copywriting and design for direct mail?
Yes, using in-house resources.
2. Does your agency provide concept, copywriting and design for print ads?
Yes, using in-house resources.
3. Does your agency provide concept, copywriting and design for collateral/inserts?
Yes, using in-house resources.
4. Does your agency provide concept, copywriting and design for fulfillment kits?
Yes, using in-house resources.
5. Is there any part of the above process that is outsourced?
No.

BlueCozmos is a highly creative, versatile, and reliable partner. Pentegra and BlueCozmos partnered on several national direct mail campaigns for over four years. I credit our enhanced market share and the education of our financial advisor and plan sponsors to these campaigns.

Retirement Plan details are complex. BlueCozmos made the finer points of our process clear and concise.

Working together was easy. We’d start with a strategy session, and BlueCozmos would submit the required number of direct mail concepts within a week or two. Edits were usually minor.

I cannot recommend BlueCozmos highly enough.

Maria Siegel
Pentegra Retirement

6. Does the agency provide services other than creative development like print production, website development? (strategy, SEO, List purchase and paid search , Media buying are not part of this scope of work.)

BlueCozmos is a full-service design agency. We are a collection of strategists, designers, and digital technicians who have worked for decades in branding. We offer a complete range of end-to-end marketing and design services.  

Clients who benefit the most from us start with an idea (in the case of a start-up) or lack of confidence/are underwhelmed/are looking for new creative based on a feeling of distrust of current marketing efforts. Our best work includes either developing or reviewing an existing strategy.

In either case, clients utilize our experience best through an end-to-end engagement. These start with strategy and generally end with an ongoing review of our efforts through our direct response team.

We offer a complete list of our services on our website, BlueCozmos.com. However, we repeat it here.   

MARKETING SERVICES

STRATEGY DEVELOPMENT

BRAND AND IMAGE MANAGEMENT

CAMPAIGN AUDIT AND RESEARCH

INFORMATION GRAPHICS

E-MAIL DESIGN

TACTIC DEVELOPMENT

PRINT MANAGEMENT

COPYWRITING

ILLUSTRATION

DESIGN

WEBSITE DEVELOPMENT

Effective Contact Us Page Design Example
Effective Contact Us Page Design
57NorthPlank Effective Contact Us Page Design
Effective Contact Us Page Design
Effective Contact Us Page Design

I’ve had the opportunity to work with BlueCozmos (evolving from Blue Cosmos Design) over the last 30-years through various engagements..

I’ve found BlueCozmos to be a creative partner.  Their approach to understanding and interpreting client needs are very methodological.  They interview clients to define the problem and design collaborative solutions.  I have also been very impressed with their project management skills from initial concept design to production.  Always making sure deadlines are met, product is ready for implementation, and working well within allocated budgets and timeline.

 BlueCozmos brings tremendous pride in their work, professionalism, great midwestern values, honesty, and integrity

Amrin Singh
Insurance Professional and Consultant

7. Does your agency have recent experience developing online and offline materials, for example, landing pages, direct mail, banner ads, websites, etc for financial services (specifically insurance) and/or pharmaceutical clients or other highly regulated industries? If so, please list specific clients/campaigns (include year) and and include at least three examples of experience.

While our work has been in customer communications within the insurance sector (hence we are extremely familiar with the place of regulators in communications), most of our outbound work has been in the retail and b2b sectors. 

But we are confident many of the principles exhibited in our examples are appropriate for NYL when properly applied.

For example, the FITBIT slide show illustrates an animation using Greenstock and HTML5. The Animation draws an eye to the product offered in several variations. The second set uses similar technology to deliver a specific CTA.

The slider below these ads detail landing pages created for JPM Chase.

BlueCozmos is working with a sizeable midwest Insurance company on an enterprise campaign. This work involves a comprehensive communication system with customers across multiple lines of business and channels.

Locally, we work with Retirement Third Party Administrators and Financial advisors.

8. If your answer to qustion 7. is yes, please list the type of creative, name of the company and the year the work was performed.

BlueCozmos completed most of the examples exhibited within the past three years.

BlueCozmos has worked with: Nationwide Insurance, Grange Mutual, WesternSoutherLife, Ohio National Financial Services, Huntington Banks, JPMorgan Chase, Delta Bank, Regions Bank, OhioCasualty and others.

In all examples, Clients enlisted BlueCozmos to develop a strategy and creative based on a set of clearly defined objectives. We worked to clarify an audience, an offer and then the media used.

9. Please list, for illustration purposes, specific clients/campaigns (include year), especially for life insurance, annuity, or other financial products or services. Include at least three examples of creative work specifically developed for the direct mail and print ad mediums. Where possible, these examples should be lead/sales generation campaigns rather than branding.

Throughout the new millennium’s first decade, BlueCozmos worked with several national and regional banks, insurance companies, and investment firms to develop various customer reporting documents. We worked with companies such as Nationwide Insurance, Huntington Bankshares, Chase Bank, Delta Bank, and many more to create personalized customer banking statements. Our work was a marriage between marketing and IT as we started with focus groups, customer research, and user data to establish preferences on information delivery channels.
Through this work, we gained a unique perspective on user preferences and how that influenced their relationship with the institution.

The second decade focused on Third Party Administrators, Financial Advisors, and Plan Sponsors. Our work involved creating websites, customer portals, and other communication avenues. Our approach was to create ads, emails and communications that are simple, easy to understand, and rely on as truth. We chose this type of work for its complexity and direct challenge: The job of retirement plan administration must be founded on complete and absolute trust.

As a creative Team, BlueCozmos utilizes this experience to create dynamic outbound marketing, advertising, and customer communications of all types. Our work has had one goal: to understand and respect the equality of the communication objectives of a company and its customers.

10. Please send or attach samples of each from your client list in 6.9, especially those from the insurance industry and any AARP providers.

In business, there comes a time when you realize that you need a more cohesive and strategic marketing approach than your internal resources can provide and the BlueCozmos team offers options that can open new possibilities. 

As a Project Manager who has worked with the BlueCozmos, I appreciated the team’s creativity in exploring new marketing options.  It starts with critical conversations about intent, budget, integrated branding and then moves forward with research, recommendations, projected costs, and timelines.  Once the project is launched, there are progress meetings, concept reviews and updates on implementation which are focused on meeting our budget and campaign targets. 

In my work with BlueCozmos, I found them to be creative and flexible, responsive to changing needs and creative in finding ways to use money wisely that add value.  My partnership with them allowed us to establish a strong web presence, integrate our marketing materials and deliver cutting edge marketing messages.

Susan L Brevoort

Former Project Manager, JP Morgan Chase

11. “Please provide the breakdown of employees within your agency by the following job duties. (Please respond n/a if not applicable.)
Account Management, Copy writing, Art Direction, Graphic Design, other(Identify other).
Breakdown can be by either number of employees or percentage.”

Account Management, (1)

Copywriting, (2)

Art Direction, (2)

Graphic Design, (3)

Web Development (2)

Direct response marketing strategists and evaluators (2)

Other (Identify other).

12. Please list the principal professional staff that may potentially provide services to NYL for the scope of work described in the overview. List all key responsibilities for these staff members.

Jed Rumora, Account manager, Art Director and Strategist

Jake Clark, Web Development and DRM evaluator

Karla Moriarty, Art director, Strategist and Copywriter

Brad Dresbach, Strategist and Copywriter

Mark Shorter, Graphic Designer

Julie Somer, Graphic Designer

Tony Zara, DRM strategist, evaluator and media buyer/programmatic trader.

13. Please describe your creative process for developing direct mail and print including how you conduct initial research and brainstorm new ideas.

Creative content and art direction are based on an initial meeting with the client. This meeting covers various topics but focuses on four main points: 

The intended audience

The offer 

The medium

Creative imagery

BlueCozmos will work with NYL audience research or conduct its own if warranted. We work with CRM, market, survey data, or qualitative analysis to understand the ad’s intent. 

Next comes a thorough exploration of the NYL offer. We understand there may be more than one per ad and will work to understand each and the overall hierarchy. 

The medium will set constraints on the creative. Each carries its own set of best practices which we will present, discuss and apply as possible.

Based on this meeting BlueCozmos creates initial concepts in a collaboration between copywriters, strategists, and designers. We then present at a follow-up brainstorming session with the client. The top ideas selected are then tested against the objectives. 

Design exploration is still at the heart of our work. Our creative presentations involve “right, left, and center” versions. The right is the one you might expect to see, the left is not, and the center is somewhere between. The left-handed version challenges norms and generally pushes objectives past their intent. 

We test all against brand standards (Graphic and language, and A/B or multivariate testing as needed and appropriate) and adjust as needed. Each illustrates different ideas and objectives.

We hope one of these versions fits the objectives, but we fully recognize it’s more likely our clients and our focus groups will like elements of all. We work to combine them into a fourth and final version at our second review session.

14. Is your staff shared across all disciplines, such as web/internet, or dedicated to traditional advertising/media direct marketing only?

BlueCozmos focuses solely on effective message delivery for our clients. Our strategy and objective review process helps us determine the most effective sales channels.

The staff of BlueCozmos is well-rounded in experience. We work in both electronic and traditional publishing. We develop websites, outbound marketing, as well as printed sales campaigns. Over time, we’ve realized the value of working across channels to understand the message and the audience.

BlueCozmos started as a graphic design firm in the late 1980s. Since then, we have practiced multiple areas of design. Our roots are in a diverse practice. Our staff is experienced in print, advertising, and all forms of electronic media, as well as project management.

Since its inception, Hawk100 has engaged Blue Cozmos to successfully develop and implement marketing and business objectives. We have worked closely with Blue Cozmos and its founder – Jed Rumora – beginning in 2008 to accomplish the following marketing objectives:

Branding. Blue Cozmos helped Hawk100 develop its identity including logo, tagline, and graphics standards that promote our business and succinctly communicate competitive differentiation.

Tactics. Conducting client surveys, focused interviews, and in-depth follow-on discussions, Blue Cozmos helped Hawk100 understand and interpret client demand and to implement a focused, members-only business approach that supports bespoke service.

Website. Blue Cozmos has been our integral partner in designing, developing, deploying, updating, and managing the Hawk100 website to align with our business objectives.

Graphics. Blue Cozmos has helped Hawk100 remain at the forefront of evolving client needs and has designed graphics that help Hawk100 adapt to communicate emerging and complex concepts with uniquely understandable illustrations.

Statements. Client communication is critical in every service industry, and periodic client statements are central to communication of wealth advice. Blue Cozmos designed Hawk100 client statements to organize and communicate relevant information in clear, consistent, and concise fashion. Hawk100 has been able to weave the Blue Cozmos designs throughout our business platform.

Blue Cozmos has satisfied our objectives for each work project and within defined budget. Blue Cozmos has helped Hawk100 recapture success when we have fallen short of our own goals. With curiosity, patience, diligence, and integrity, Jed Rumora and Blue Cozmos act with solid business ethics.

Over a fourteen-year relationship, Jed Rumora has become a trusted friend who has earned my full and unqualified endorsement and recommendation.

Richard Clemens, CFA CPA

President

15. Please indicate the percentage of revenue represented by online advertising/media vs traditional advertising/media. (Total percent should equal 100%.)

Online advertising accounts for 30% of the hours sold annually (typical). Traditional (collateral print, strategy, and branding) media accounts for the remaining income down (70%)

16. Describe your creative process for developing direct mail, print, collateral/inserts and fulfillment.

Please refer to the response to question #13.  Our process is the same for all media.

17. Does your organization have backup servers in the event of a system crash? How often are your files backed up?

BlueCozmos creates content daily through creative explorations, meeting notes, summaries, and recommendations. We consider this NYL content and place it on a scalable, cloud-based digital asset management (DAM) platform, backed up nightly via a scheduled cron job and continuously monitored.

18. Please provide a fee range for creative development for the following: direct mail kits, print ads, collateral/inserts and fulfillment kits. List separately. Please provide details of how your firm arrived at this number (role including description, qualification, hourly rates, estimated hours/allocation of time, etc.)

BlueCozmos is founded on accurate estimates and staying within established budgets. This question presents several variable situations that are difficult to estimate accurately. For example, does creative development include production in all cases?

BlueCozmos operates under a shop rate of $80.00 per hour. We bill all professional services at that rate. Once we establish a scope of work with NYL, we will provide estimates. 

For simple discussion purposes, we submit the following numbers:

Direct mail kit $3500 – 7500

Print ads

(single, following a campaign) $1200 – 2400

Collateral/inserts $2400 – 4800

Fulfillment kits $3200 – 6200.  

Once we are engaged, we will meet to discuss the objectives of any project. At that point, we will pinpoint the hours needed from each of our staff and create a formal statement of work.  This SOW details projected expenses, timeline and deliverables. 

19. What tools do you have at your disposal to help you achieve success?

BlueCozmos works with all industry tools to obtain a complete picture of the effectiveness of our work. We measure the engagement of any banner ads, conversions for landing pages, forms lead, or other campaigns by platform (google, i.e.) or internal NYL metrics. We find we need more than one tool to get to an accurate representation of measured clicks and Google submissions. No one tool can tell a complete story.

BlueCozmos assumes NYL will have internal tools to maintain effectiveness. BlueCozmos would need access to internal NYL systems to render accurate numbers on product sign-up or customer service for repeating product queries.

20. Please describe your agency’s experience with developing rich media advertising. Include specific examples and results if possible. If possible, please include two (2) examples of experience with in-banner micro sites, data capture forms, or interactive tools.

Recently we used a lead generation strategy with The Motley Fool to find new service subscribers via contextual targeting. Contextual targeting is a way to find audiences where they are most likely to be receptive to learning about the offer. This improved outcomes for TMF and informed their current strategies.

21. Please describe, in no more than one typewritten page, your agency process for analyzing campaign results and optimizing online advertising creative.

We use a test-and-scale approach to media optimization. The audience, offer, creative, and medium placements must work together to scale against objectives. 

There are typically three measurement protocols that can inform the strategy.

1. Directly measurable performance metrics – these are medium-dependent metrics that measure response actions in relation to the campaign flight.

2. Panel survey data – to measure consumer impacts and perceptions

3. Media Mix Modeling – to measure and predict the impact of changes to the weight of a particular channel in the mix.

Online campaigns rely heavily on performance metrics for immediate feedback. Often times in conjunction with machine learning that feedback can be used to optimize creatives, placements, and bids in real time to get the most possible results from the investment.

22. Please describe, in no more than one typewritten page, your agency’s online research experience. This can include online / offline primary consumer research, usability testing, ad effectiveness research, concept/creative testing, clickstream analysis, etc. Are there specific methodologies you use, or companies with whom you partner? Who within your agency typically leads these projects?

BlueCozmos considers consumer research a staple in its creative process. As we indicated in the previous response, we consider customer feedback invaluable and work with tools such as card sorting (to measure site architecture effectiveness), user testing (critical for first-hand response testing), competitive benchmarking (for understanding brand positioning), TreeJack Testing (for creating clear hierarchies) and on and offline focus groups.

BlueCozmos uses psychographic, demographic data, or CRM data via tools like Experian Mosaic to build out customer personas. These personas often tie into interest levels. Once we have zoned in on our customer avatar, we begin to find contextually relevant placements where the customer persona is most likely to align their interests with our offer. We use tools like Grapeshot, peer39, and ahrefs to find and activate these contextual targets.

Back To Top