CJRW Keeps Tourism

Cranford Johnson Rob-inson Woods has retained the $17 million account of the Arkansas Department of Parks and Tourism.

CJRW successfully defended the business against two other Little Rock, Ark., agencies— Heathcott Associates and Sells/Clark.

The emergence of contenders for Arkansas’ largest account presented CJRW with a new experience: competition. No other shops vied for the account the last time it went into review in 1996. CJRW has handled the business since 1990.

The Arkansas State Parks, Rec-reation and Travel Commission, which heard presentations from the three finalists last week, chose the incumbent because “they felt we’ve gotten exemplary performance from the agency in years past, and CJRW brought out interesting ways to build on [existing advertising],”said state tourism director Joe David Rice.

CJRW pitched an image campaign called “Arkansas. Look Forward,” which would supplement its existing tourism work.

“This campaign is di-rected toward the group that isn’t coming to Ar-kansas,” agency chairman Shelby Woods said. “People are willing to drive further distances now and we feel this is an opportunity to invite people to travel farther.”

Unlike the tourism ac-count, which is funded by taxpayer dollars, CJRW suggested its image initiative could be supported by public and private businesses in Arkansas.

CJRW’s new contract for the creative and media account begins in July and runs two years.

The agency will continue to use the 25-year-old “Arkansas, the natural state” positioning.