Cramer-Krasselt officials would not comment.
More than one source said the agency will be named this week as the first agency to coordinate a cohesive broadcast campaign for the 80-store division of Sears, Roebuck & Co. In the past, Sears has been reluctant to push a comprehensive marketing program behind the off-price stores, being afraid that it would dilute the value of the 800-plus mainline department stores.
But the outlet stores division has been doing well, and is seen as a somewhat formidable competitor to other discounters such as Kmart and the nation's largest retailer Wal-Mart.
For C-K, which has not gone after too many retailing projects in the past, the win is a boost for its local office, mainly because of the tie to the Sears name. Medium-sized agencies often look for strong local accounts for leverage for future business.
Sears will likely spend close to $9 million on the outlet stores. At least half of the money will be spent in newspapers, which Sears will probably handle in-house. The rest of the account will mostly be radio in the first year and move into TV in 1994.
Other agencies in the pitch were CME/KHBB; Grant/Jacoby; and Ketchum Advertising, all Chicago.
Sears' mainline department stores had one of its best Christmas selling seasons in years, and sources say that January looks promising as well. Consumer confidence seems to be settling back. However, sources close to Sears say the huge retailer under new Merchandise Group head Arthur Martinez still plans to shake up marketing plans in 1993.
Copyright Adweek L.P. (1993)