Following weeks of speculation, The Walt Disney Co. confirmed it has assigned ad duties for the first major Disney Channel branding campaign to Colby Effler & Partners. Billings are $10 million.
The Santa Monica, Calif., agency's task is to make the cable network "cool" for 9- to 11-year-olds, a highly coveted target market.
A print, radio, TV and interactive campaign is expected by summer.
"We need to change the perception that the Disney Channel is just for little kids," marketing vice president Adam Sanderson said last week. "We want the 'take-away' for kids to be that the Disney Channel is cool."
The network has historically had a stronger following among younger children and families, Sanderson said.
Colby separated itself from agencies including Ogilvy & Mather, Los Angeles, and Saatchi & Saatchi, San Francisco, by visiting the homes of those in the target audience.
Agency officials plan a campaign based on the three concepts it pitched during the review, but declined to provide further details.
"We would like to find a campaign that encompasses all the elements of the three," said president and executive creative director Rick Colby.
The shop also plans to capitalize on the strength of popular Disney characters such as "The Famous Jett Jackson," an action adventure hero who appealed to children in the focus groups.
The account team includes Colby, marketing director Kim Haskell, senior vice president and account group director Paul Izenstark and Joan Goldfeder, senior vice president of strategic marketing.