Stroh Moves Its Media–Again

Stroh Brewery Co. has moved its media planning and buying account from W. B. Doner & Co. to SFM Media.
This is the second time this year that Stroh has changed media agencies. In February, the client plucked its creative and media buying account from Hal Riney & Partners in San Francisco and moved it to W.B. Doner in Southfield, Mich.
Doner retains creative duties on the account, which is shared between its Southfield and Baltimore offices.
The client, based in Detroit, budgeted about $20 million for advertising this year, a source said. That figure could increase next year, the source said.
Doner’s Baltimore office had been the agency of record for G. Heileman Brewing Co., which Stroh acquired in August 1996. During this year, SFM in New York handled buying on a limited basis, primarily for Old Milwaukee, which is marketed by Stroh, said Lacey Logan, a Stroh representative. Stroh was impressed by SFM’s work and, in January, SFM will take over all media duties for the company. “SFM has a tremendous track record and Heileman has been very pleased with SFM’s ability to deliver,” Logan said.
Stroh chose SFM without a review. “The reality was that Heileman, prior to our acquisition, had worked with SFM,” Logan said. The move “allows Stroh the opportunity to have all of its buying done by one agency rather than a variety of different ad agencies.”
Doner chief executive officer Alan Kalter said that the Baltimore agency anticipated the consolidation. “They told us our handling of the media was an interim step,” Kalter said. Doner is in no danger of losing Stroh’s creative assignment, according to the client.
“This gives Doner a chance to focus purely on what they do best–the creative side,” Logan said. –with Teresa Andreoli and Gerry Khermouch