Ogilvy Chicago Wins Morton Salt

By Patrick Coffee 

Morton Salt, the Chicago-based leader in the North American condiments market, has chosen Ogilvy Chicago as its new creative agency of record after a review.

The brand, which may be best known to consumers for its iconic logo and “Umbrella Girl” mascot, is in the process of re-introducing itself to the world following a 2014 reworking of its logo/brand positioning by New York agencies Pause for Thought and Addison. That move came in celebration of the mascot’s 100th anniversary; here’s an interesting link illustrating its progression from 1914 to the present.

A client spokesperson tells us that the brand began focusing more intently on its position within the market last year and saw “Huge potential to elevate this already-iconic brand through heightened communications and investment.”

Morton therefore thought this summer was the right time to launch a review, which began in late June. Like many such classic brands, this one issued an RPF in order to “identify a partner to help us reignite the Morton brand in the minds of current and future generations.”

In case you weren’t aware, Morton doesn’t just make table salt; its product portfolio also includes salts to melt ice and “soften” water in addition to “a robust B2B business” whose clients range from food processing facilities to pharmaceutical brands that use salt in some part of their production processes.

The client confirmed that five agencies were involved in the review but declined to name them; sources list The Martin Agency, 360i and Leo Burnett among Ogilvy’s competitors.

Ogilvy Chicago has yet to comment on its latest win, which follows Jimmy Dean and Corona Light/Modelo Especial late last year.

The client was not ready to specify an estimated launch date for new campaigns but told us that Ogilvy will work with its PR, digital and social partners “in an integrated fashion to reignite the brand.”

Morton spent just under $9 million on paid media in 2013 according to Kantar Media.