The U.S. Marine Corps is preparing to launch a mandatory review of its advertising account, now at J. Walter Thompson in Atlanta, sources said.
New York consultant Richard Robbins has been hired to draft a request for proposal. Billings, which include traditional advertising, media and below-the-line marketing, are estimated at $50 million.
Separately, the Joint Recruiting Advertising Program has issued a questionnaire for its $15-20 million account, now at Bates USA in New York. Replies are due back June 15.
The form outlines a two-phase process, which includes traditional advertising and media. Jones Lun din Beals, Chicago, which is managing the review, declined comment.
JWT, home to the Ma rines since 1947, will defend, as will Bates, which has done creative and media planning for JRAP since 1991, agency executives said. Sister shop Zenith Media, New York, buys media.
A USMC television spot, which broke in November, showed retired Marines and photo albums to tout the Corps' 225th anni-versary. A Joint Recruiting commercial from last year positioned the client as a career option for teenagers.
The reviews come as the National Guard continues a search that began last year [Adweek, Nov. 6]. At least three shops are vying for a five-year contract worth $150 million. The contenders are WestWayne and Austin Kelley, both in Atlanta, and incumbent Laughlin Marinaccio & Owens in Arlington, Va.
The Army and Navy completed reviews last year.