Arnold Wins Market

Arnold is preparing a campaign designed to portray McDonald’s Boston Market casual-dining chain as “a one-of-a-kind experience” after winning creative chores on the $35 million account last week, said agency president Fran Kelly.

Boston’s Arnold, a unit of Havas and a McDonald’s roster shop, succeeds Suissa Miller, Los Angeles, on Boston Market, which handles media duties in-house. Suissa Miller defended, and Wieden + Kennedy in Portland, Ore., also pitched.

Work will break in early 2003, and ads will use a strong lifestyle message in order to make the Golden, Colo.-based chain “more relevant to how people live today,” Kelly said. Ensuring that the 650-unit chain stands out as “not just another chicken place” is paramount, he said.

Suissa Miller has stressed Boston Market’s home-style fare and relaxed atmosphere in ads tagged, “Slow down.” Kelly anticipates Arnold taking “a fresh approach” to creative, but he stopped short of saying that the current tagline will be scrapped.

McDonald’s acquired Boston Market three years ago and has taken steps to trim expenses at the chain, closing about 350 of 1,000 locations.

Kelly would not go into details about Arnold’s presentation. But the shop’s domestic revival of the Volkswagen brand—achieved by illustrating how VW enhances consumer lifestyles—may provide a blueprint for a Boston Market turnaround, sources said.

“We’re committed to growing the brand, and Arnold has a reputation for some innovative, out-of-the-box advertising and integrated marketing campaigns,” said client representative Phyllis Hammond.