ATLANTA Four agencies have advanced in the review for Bon Secours St. Francis Health System's advertising account, the client confirmed.
Erwin-Penland and Fuel, both of Greenville, S.C., will compete against Craig Jackson & Partners in Chapel Hill, N.C., and Cohen & Associates of Atlanta, the client said. Eleven-year incumbent Brains on Fire, also in Greenville, did not participate.
Creative presentations are set for Nov. 5-6. Agencies will present details of one of their existing campaigns to a 17-member search committee.
Jo Halmes, marketing director for the Greenville hospital system, said marketing and administrative teams would then interview two finalists. A decision is expected the week of Nov. 17.
The hospital has previously spent $1 million annually on advertising, according to TNS Media Intelligence/CMR. A spending increase is expected, but Halmes could not say how much. "We're taking St. Francis to a more competitive level by investing in branding and strategy," she said.
The facility competes with Greenville Hospital Center. "We have a strong competitor here," said Halmes.
The client ran ads soliciting agencies in newspapers throughout the Carolinas and Georgia, eliciting approximately 40 initial responses, Halmes said.
"With technology today, we felt we could use a firm outside Greenville if they were qualified," she said. "We went regionally for the bigger pool."
The four agencies were selected from the 24 shops that responded to a lengthy request for proposal. "Case studies were a big help [in determining semifinalists]," said Halmes, adding that all four shops included examples that stood out because they were well written and used graphics to good effect.