DETROIT-Red Roof Inns has taken preliminary steps toward launching a formal review of its $10 million account, which has been with W.B. Doner & Co., Southfield, Mich., for 10 years.
The economy hotel chain has contacted consultants to conduct a review, sources said. Red Roof Inn officials also have had informal discussions with at least one agency about its capabilities, sources said.
Stephen Parker, who joined Red Roof as senior vice president of sales and marketing in May, did not deny having discussions with consultants about conducting a review.
He said that his current priority is finalizing his 1998 budget and marketing plans, although he didn't dismiss a review in about six weeks. "Anything's a possibility," he said. "I wouldn't rule anything out."
As for having discussions with other agencies, Parker said, "any- time anybody has an opportunity for looking at how to improve or get better stuff, I think they probably would. Business has been kind of up and down. We're trying to figure out some measures to put into place to try to generate more business."
Parker replaced Dave Wible, who had been in the marketing post more than 10 years. Wible had hired Doner in Red Roof's only agency review. Parker came from Choice Hotels International, which includes the Comfort, Sleep, Clarion and Quality Inns lodging chains.
Another Red Roof marketing official also confirmed early moves toward a review.
Mike Agee, manager of marketing programs for Hilliard, Ohio-based Red Roof Inns, said, "We're just thinking about our situation. We're thinking about whether to just stick with Doner or to go through an agency review."
A fourth-quarter campaign from Doner was shelved due to various budget constraints, Agee said. -with Teresa Andreoli