JWT Specialized Communications here has landed the recruitment advertising account of restaurant operator Brinker International after a review that was narrowed to four undisclosed agencies.
Spending on the account was estimated at $2 million by JWTSC officials.
The agency will front advertising campaigns geared at attracting new employees and managers to the company and its stable of national properties: Chili's Grill & Bar, On the Border Mexican Cafe, Romano's Macaroni Grill, Corner Bakery and Maggiano's Little Italy.
JWTSC managing director Leslye Geller said the win represents the first restaurant client for the Dallas office. She said the agency is working on print, outdoor, radio and Internet ads for each restaurant.
Overseeing the agency search team was Paul Dykstra, human resources director of Chili's central region. Dykstra said the account was previously at Transworld Advertising in Merritt Island, Fla.
"Because each restaurant concept has its own distinct personality, it's important to find the right people who embrace that restaurant's personality and promote the experience to the customer," Dykstra said.
Dykstra cited JWTSC's "depth and breadth of capabilities" as factors in its selection over the other competitors.
Marilyn Lee will be the JWTSC account supervisor on the Brinker business.
"Brinker's conducts extensive marketing research before entering a new market with a restaurant concept," Geller said. "We will be conducting similar analysis from an employment point of view. This data will be used to create employment marketing communications that will be effective for each market."
Brinker International, based in Dallas, operates 850 units under various banners. The Southwestern-themed Chili's is its largest. Its current test concepts include EatZi's Market & Bakery, Big Bowl and Wildfire steak houses.