Meijer Sends Its Media to M&W

Meijer superstores awarded its $20 million broadcast media account to Meyer & Wallis last week following an informal review.

The Milwaukee shop, which has handled creative for Meijer for seven years, has been in talks with the chain about doing media work for almost two years, said the agency’s chairman and CEO Robert J. Meyer.

“We have told them to consider us to handle it all to eliminate a layer of communication and streamline operations,” Meyer said.

Sources said Meijer talked to several shops in the Midwest about its broadcast buying and planning account before deciding to go with Meyer & Wallis. The new assignment begins July 1.

The Grand Rapids, Mich., superstore will continue to handle its print in-house. A company representative could not be reached for comment.

However, sources said the chain was looking to move its media to an outside shop because of its plans to expand into markets where it has limited knowledge of the demographics.

“Meijer knows its market very well, but as it expands, [the com pany] needed to understand those other markets,” a source said.

Meijer currently has about 140 stores in Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Michigan and Ohio.

The mega-sized units in the chain are combination of grocery and general-merchandise store, some with gas stations. Stores average 200,000 to 250,000 square feet.

Its advertising campaign carries the tagline, “A million reasons, a single store,” Meyer said.

Meijer’s media in the past has been concentrated heavily in large newspaper inserts. It is now expanding more into TV and radio in about 18 markets, sources said.

The company’s media expenditures in the past three years have ranged between $20 million to $25 million, according to figures from Competitive Media Reporting.

The last outside agency to handle Meijer’s media before it was moved in-house about seven years ago was Doner, in Southfield, Mich.

Owned by the Meijer family, the superstore chain ranked 11th in Forbes 500 private-companies listing last year. K



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