DETROIT-General Motors has completed its Chevrolet division regional reviews for dealer advertising business, selecting Strong Automotive Merchandising in Birmingham, Ala., to handle the territory surrounding metro Chicago.
Strong prevailed over six other agencies for the advertising business of the Great Lakes Chevy dealers Area Marketing Group (AMG), an account worth approximately $8 million. This marks the fourth AMG win for Strong, which doubled its Chevy billings through the automaker's regional review process.
Recently, 206 Dealer Marketing Groups (DMGs) were consolidated into 28 AMGs to handle the $300 million Chevy dealerships spend on annual advertising.
Before the consolidation, Strong was working for 16 Chevy markets with billings of about $25 million total. The four AMGs currently on Strong's roster comprise some 40 markets, with budgets adding up to about $50 million.
Great Lakes dealers could not decide between two other agency finalists-J.W. Messner, Grand Rapids, Mich., and Kragie/Newell, Des Moines, Iowa-and, as a compromise, decided to choose Strong, which had been the consensus second choice, according to sources.
Other agencies that made presentations included Graham Advertising in Colorado Springs, Colo.; B.A. Advertising in Dallas; and Gianettino & Meredith in Short Hills, N.J.
Dauro Advertising in Colorado Springs, which handled advertising for two of the area's eight DMGs before the Great Lakes AMG was formed, retained the $1 million Madison, Wis., account.
Chevrolet dealers in that market have decided not to join the Great Lakes AMG, which now encompasses a seven-market territory that includes Champaign, Peoria, Rockford and the Quad Cities in Illinois; Milwaukee; and South Bend and Fort Wayne, Ind.
-with Scott Hume