Dallas Tandem Is Surprise Choice To Share Uniden’s TV Branding

Uniden America in Fort Worth, Texas, has selected two Dallas agencies–Coffee/Black Advertising and Evans Advertising & Public Relations–to handle its $10 million account.
Coffee/Black is developing advertising; Evans is responsible for media. Their first collaboration debuted Sunday during the National Collegiate Athletic Association men’s basketball tournament with a humorous 30-second spot shot in Japan for the client’s VoiceDial cordless phone.
Both agencies will work with the in-house staff of Uniden America, owned by Japan-based Uniden, on TV assignments that will yield another spot in the fall. The shops will also provide strategic planning to Uniden, which previously assigned projects to GSD&M, Austin, Texas.
The selection of either agency is somewhat of a surprise, admitted Uniden America marketing vice president John Harris. Originally, Uniden’s Japanese chairman, Hidero Fujimoto, was set on landing a top five U.S. agency. “He’s using Dentsu in Japan,” said Harris.
After talks with about five national shops, Harris said he preferred the work from Coffee/Black, previously a project agency for Uniden. He also considered the two-year public relations support of Evans and was able to convince Fujimoto and the rest of the board to back his choice of both agencies.
In the debut ad, famed champion sumo wrestler Konishiki tears apart a stack of phone books in anger when he cannot find an important number. After ravaging the entire pile, he places a call: “Pizza man,” he tells the VoiceDial phone, which then automatically rings a pizza delivery outfit. The spot ends with the tag: “Because names are so much easier than numbers.”
“It certainly is an account that can put us on the map,” said Coffee/Black principal Jim Sykora.
Evans, part of the Salt Lake City-based EvansGroup, will place buys on prime-time network, cable and sports programming.