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Duffy Goes Beyond Its Own Backyard

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BOSTON Duffy & Shanley said it has added the $3-4 million account of Anthony & Sylvan, one of America's largest installers of custom-designed, in-ground concrete residential swimming pools and spas.

The Providence, R.I.-based independent succeeds The Marketing Group in Philadelphia on Anthony & Sylvan, which is based in Cleveland and operates 40 locations in 16 sates.

The work, which includes print, broadcast, collateral, direct mail and public relations, was awarded following a review. The incumbent did not defend; other contenders were undisclosed.

By pitching outside its New England base of operations, Duffy adds "a big account for us," an agency representative said. "It taps into our expertise marketing to women and expands our expertise in leisure products."

The 40-person agency ranks among several smaller regional shops to successfully employ this tactic, having previously picked up work from Nike in Oregon and Cosco in Indiana. Several comparable shops have followed suit, notably Boston independent Partners & Simons, which recently won the $12-15 million account of Philadelphia-based Sovereign Bank [Adweek Online, March 10].

"It is critical to pitch outside the region. Otherwise, you'll always be a regional shop, and that will limit your growth," said Chad Caufield, managing director of Boston-based MMB, which shot up to $450 million in billings in five years mainly by concentrating in large part on non-New England clients like Jiffy Lube, eMusic and Capital One.

"The truth is that it doesn't matter where a client is based, but rather are they a national brand player—or do they have the potential to become one," Caufield said.

Industry executives expect this trend to continue, especially since some of New England's largest players have lately pursued relatively modest local accounts, essentially freezing out the small independents. For example, Interpublic Group's Mullen in Wenham, Mass., last year took on four assignments in the $1-5 million range: Massachusetts Tourism, TripAdvisors, 3Com and MasterCraft.