‘Examiner’ Selects Gardner Geary Coll

SAN FRANCISCO Gardner Geary Coll has won the advertising account of the San Francisco Examiner following a review, the agency said.

GGC defeated two other San Francisco shops, Swirl and Yates Advertising, in the final round of a review that began in early October, said Nicola Golden, vice president of marketing at the newspaper.

“We were impressed with Gardner’s strategic thinking as well as its creative ideas,” Golden said. “We need to be perceived as a viable alternative to the Chronicle by both readers and advertisers, and GGC can help us reach that objective.”

There was no incumbent agency. The Examiner did not record any spending on advertising in 2003 or 2004. Billings were undisclosed, though sources estimated the paper would spend close to $1 million on a new ad campaign.

GGC’s first work, due in spring 2005, will involve print and outdoor, Golden said. The client and agency are considering television and radio advertising as well.

The Examiner has a legacy of being a strong rival to the San Francisco Chronicle, Northern California’s largest paper. The Hearst Corp. sold the Examiner to the Fang family in 2000 when Hearst purchased the Chronicle. The Fangs sold the Examiner to Denver businessman Phil Anschutz in 2004, who has said he plans to make it a “journalistic force” in the Bay Area.