Independent Bernstein-Rein in Kansas City has been chosen to handle the ad account of Family Dollar Stores as the first lead agency for the discount chain, which operates in 44 states.
Despite its considerable footprint, the client has been a moderate ad spender, with outlays in the $1-2 million range in recent years and $400,000 so far in 2010, per Nielsen.
Bernstein-Rein's retail experience led to its selection by the dollar-store operation. The shop's background in that arena includes PetSmart and McDonald's (both current clients), and past efforts for Walmart and Blockbuster.
"We really feel that this isn't a comedown at all" from higher-profile clients, an agency rep said. "When Bernstein-Rein first got Walmart, they had 70 stores. We're coming on board with Family Dollar at a very exciting time. They have over 6,700 stores right now and are growing very fast."
The assignment includes creative and digital chores, analytics, database services and media planning and buying.
The agency has been on something of roll in recent months, also adding work from MetLife, Hostess and the Nebraska Book Co., among others.