Anti-Paint Group Does Search

The Wall Covering Council, a new industry association organized to promote consumers’ awareness of wall paint alternatives, has hired Achenbaum Bogda Associates to conduct an agency search.
The organization, which has declared paint to be “the enemy,” will spend at least $3 million on ads, according to Alvin Achenbaum, chairman of the New York consultancy.
Initially, 255 shops were considered as potential candidates, but questionnaires were sent to about 27 agencies “as north as Boston, as south as Miami, as west as Kansas City, [Mo.],” Achenbaum said. A large number of shops in New York and Chicago were contacted, he said.
The list has now been pared to 10 agencies. Achenbaum said he hoped to winnow that number to five or six shops this week. The client will make a decision in October.
The council, the home base of which has yet to be determined, has seven board members. Three are “heads of wallpaper companies,” Achenbaum said, declining to elaborate. The council’s mission revolves around one overriding principle, he said: “In this case, paint is the enemy.”
One question in the request for proposal asks about the number of female staffers at the shops. At least one agency called to complain about the nature of the query.
“Since women make 95 percent of the purchases in the category, we were very interested in the female point of view,” Achenbaum said.
“We just would like women to participate in this account,” he said, “It was an innocent request, but I am sorry I asked it.”