Vanity Fair Intimates Makes a Marketing Match

Match Inc. has won the creative account of apparelmanufacturer Vanity Fair Intimates, triumphing over finalist Huey/Paprocki.

The win, according to B.A. Albert, a principal at the Atlanta agency, came down to a client decision over which shop could best serve the women’s market.

“They wanted people who understood the changing female market and could get inside the heads of the female consumer,” Albert said.

Albert and co-creative director Elizabeth Baskin own the 16-person creative shop.

The incumbent, The Martin Agency in Richmond, Va., did not participate in a review that began last summer and included as many as a dozen shops, including Atlanta crosstown rivals Fitzgerald & Co. and Huey/Paprocki.

Among other creative duties, Match will design a national print campaign to support two new product launches next year.

“We feel we have a very personal relationship with our target consumer,” said Beverly Guyer, client director of marketing. “Match will be able to speak to our consumers with respect and intelligence.”

Media planning and buying will be performed in-house, part of a streamlining initiative intended to keep the brand competitive in a tight market category.

That belt-tightening was one of the reasons cited by The Martin Agency [Adweek, July 31] for relinquishing the account, which it had held since 1996.

“Resources have shifted from advertising to other areas of marketing,” said Alda Abbracciamento, partner and group management supervisor at Martin.

Competitive Media Reporting tracks a steady decline in advertising expenditures: $12.3 million in 1998; $4.3 million in 1998; and $545,000 through spring 2000.

The company has begun showing renewed signs of marketing life. Its BodySculpting line, a new millennium evolution of women’s girdles, was launched successfully this fall.

“Now we plan to increase our advertising investment,” saidGuyer.

Vanity Fair is a unit of VF Corp. in Greensboro, N.C., a maker of women’s apparel. Product lines range from work clothes to undergarments.