Doe-Anderson Lands Morton’s

Morton’s of Chicago has awarded its advertising account to Doe-Anderson.

The Louisville, Ky., shop had pitched the estimated $4 million business two years ago, losing out to Laughlin/Constable in Chicago.

After assignments for a Morton’s opening in Louisville, Doe-Anderson reignited the client’s interest.

“We got a call from John Bettin, president of Morton’s, second-guessing the [review’s] decision,” said an agency source.

The shop showed Bettin its work for Maker’s Mark whiskey. A customer-retention program matched the steak-house’s shift in strategy.

“There was no question that Doe-Anderson was the best fit,” said Bettin. “We wanted an agency that could capitalize on our position as a market leader while expanding efforts to meet consumer needs.”

The restaurant chain has grown to 61 locations in the last 10 years.

“Doe-Anderson un-derstands what we need to do business-wise,” said Roger Drake, client vice president of communications. “They did in the original review.”

Morton’s marketing strategy focuses on turning local residents into regular customers.

“Business travelers know what they’re going to get because they’re familiar with us,” said Drake.

Doe-Anderson’s promotions for Maker’s Mark centered on getting people to talk about their personal experiences with the brand.

“Both brands are very high end,” said agency executive creative director Jim White. “The issue is to keep their premium-ness … while making them accessible.”

Efforts will include print, direct mail and special event marketing revolving around wine tastings and corporate partnerships.

“We start with regular customers, finding out what’s most special to them. We then go to infrequent users, then shift to competitors’ customers,” said White. “The concept is to capture the essence—the combination of food, people and experience.”

The account also includes Bertolini’s, a chain of Italian eateries owned by Morton’s Restaurant Group of New Hyde Park, N.Y.