Dairy Queen Invites 7 Shops To Pitch Account

By Ellen Rooney Martin

CHICAGO–Executives at International Diary Queen will hear presentations by the end of April from seven agencies vying for its $25-30 million creative and media account.

Those shops invited to make presentations to IDQ are incumbent Campbell Mithun Esty in Minneapolis; Campbell-Ewald in Warren, Mich.; as well as BBDO, Grey Advertising, The Lord Group, Publicis/Bloom and Saatchi & Saatchi Advertising, all in New York, according to Gary See, vice president of marketing for the Minneapolis-based fast-food and ice cream chain.

‘These agencies have been invited to the next level, which is presentations to our national dealer marketing council, during the last week of April,’ See said. He would not elaborate.

The company initially screened more than 30 full-service agencies with the help of Advertising Agency Register in New York. Blind questionnaires were sent out in February. The company has almost 5,000 stores, located primarily in the Midwest and East.

Among those eliminated from the search were Kirshenbaum Bond & Partners and Jordan, McGrath, Case & Taylor, both in New York; and Carmichael Lynch in Minneapolis.

W.B. Doner & Co. in Southfield, Mich., withdrew earlier this month because of a conflict with the Arby’s account handled by the agency’s office in Baltimore.

CME has worked with IDQ in Minneapolis since 1962. Its current campaign features a cartoon character and the line ‘Think DQ.’ When the review was announced, CME was told it would automatically advance to the final round.

CME was awarded the $75 million Domino’s Pizza account earlier this month. That win does not pose a conflict for IDQ, See said.

In the AAR questionnaire, the agencies were asked to provide their retail and franchise experience, capabilities in spot TV planning and buying, and to describe specific experience in marketing to children aged 2 to 11.

A decision is expected by June.

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