Adams Golf has initiated a review that will allow several Southwest agencies to take a swing at its estimated $10 million advertising account.
The Plano, Texas-based company manufactures and markets fairway woods as well as drivers, irons and wedges. Adams is also a maker of custom-fitted clubs.
Agencies in the pitch include DDB Dallas; Temerlin McClain, Irving, Texas; The Richards Group, Dallas; and Barkley, Evergreen & Partners, Kansas City. The current agency of record, RD/Fox in San Francisco, will defend its business.
A representative for RD/Fox said the client has expressed satisfaction with the incumbent's work and is simply reviewing its options. A decision is expected in mid-August.
Paul Vernon, director of advertising for Adams, declined to comment on the review. The company's current marketing strategy encompasses direct mail, print advertising in golf magazines, TV spots which air on golf tournament telecasts, infomercials and newspapers--"a little bit of everything," he said.
Adams also has allied itself with two big golfing names. Hank Haney, a professional instructor, "has been a great member of our company," said Vernon. "He's in Golf Digest every month with our golf clubs in his hands." One of the company's major custom-fitting sites is located at Haney's Golf Ranch in Dallas.
World Golf Hall of Famer Nick Faldo has also helped Adams design and promote a series of his signature wedges introduced earlier this year.
The agency review takes place at a time when publicly owned Adams is experiencing financial problems. Despite the fact that the company produces the best-selling fairway wood in this country, an overall weakness in the golf equipment market saw Adams' sales drop 42 percent in the first six months of this year, compared to the same period of 1998.
Adams last week reported six-month sales of $34 million and a net loss of $2.4 million.