Frank And Gordon – How Soon Forgotten

Here lie Frank and Gordon
2005 – 2008

Bell Canada is killing Frank and Gordon. Full-page ads in today’s dailies have Frank and Gordon saying their final goodbye.

Well, the time has come for us to say goodbye. We’ve had a great time introducing you to neat products that make your personal and business life better. Nature is calling, and we have been invited back to the forest to become teachers for a whole new generation of spokescritters.

Goodbye and thanks to all, especially our loyal fans and friends. Write us when you can at our new e-mail address: frankandgordon@bell.ca

Frank and Gordon, Bell Canada, Gone

They really have gone this time. There is not a trace of them on the Bell Canada website. To check that just do a google search for frank gordon site:bell.ca

The only mention, which is presumably temporary, is the following.
1. Frank and Gordon
www.bell.ca/home/portlets/personal/browserdetection/landing.jsp
.. and what does that show you?

Bell Canada browser detection

It really is an indication of how much Bell Canada does not understand the online world. Use the latest Firefox browser version 3 and you are encouraged to downgrade to version 2.

More importantly, they do not realize that an online asset can be preserved for all time at minimal cost. Frank and Gordon created enormous goodwill for Bell Canada and it is a shame that they will sink without a trace. Marketing magazine possibly has the explanation:

Though there is no word yet, we’re also wondering if the end of the beavers also signals the switch of creative agencies for Bell, with Cossette believed to have lost most or even all of the account to Leo Burnett and Zulu Alpha Kilo.

Related: Frank and Gordon Live in Push Marketing October 29, 2006

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Frank And Gordon Fired

Gordon and Frank are no longer online.

As Ken Schafer points out, those two newsworthy Canadian beavers, Frank and Gordon, that you either love or hate, seem to have been pushed out by Bell Canada. If you go to their website, frankandgordon.ca, the website is down. Bell Canada bought this domain and the .com version for three years through to October 5, 2008. But already Frank and Gordon are no more.

Bell Beaver

Perhaps one of them still appears on the main Bell Canada website as of today. He asks plaintively, “Put me in coach!” We don’t even know whether it’s Frank or Gordon. Is there a lesson to be learned from this? Did Canadian beavers turn out to be less effective than rabbits or monkeys in the telecommunications business? Only Bell Canada can answer on how good Frank and Gordon were as sales representatives.

Perhaps there’s a bigger issue involved here. Old style marketing or Push marketing is a one-way communication process. It was particularly prevalent prior to the Internet. You’d normally have a marketing campaign that could be quite costly and often only affordable by the really big companies. Each year or so you might try a different campaign, sometimes changing the advertising agency at the same time. Perhaps Bell Canada saw Frank and Gordon like that. .. Just another campaign.

Frank and Gordon did not dialogue with us.

With the Internet, a new type of marketing is possible – Pull marketing. Marketing can be a dialogue process with your customers through your website. Such a dialogue requires continuity. Through time a website develops a certain visibility. Hopefully it is more visible than the competitors’ websites. Thus you develop a marketing asset, which can be a powerful element in growing your sales through Internet marketing. Part of this comes through being visible to the search engines. However if you do not maintain a certain consistency through time, then the search engines may well show you less visibly as a recent article by William Slawski suggests.

The Frank and Gordon website has just disappeared completely. Bell Canada has abandoned this Internet asset. Perhaps Ken Schafer will be the beneficiary and derive at least some benefit through his gordonandfrank.ca website.

Update: Frank and Gordon Live in Push Marketing

Related: Bell Canada Website User Experience

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