General Mills Moving Golden Grahams Back To DDB Needham

General Mills is returning its $20 million Golden Grahams cereal account to DDB Needham Chicago, following a review of roster shops, sources said last week.
Needham, which handles several brands for the client, including Wheaties and Raisin Nut Bran, had handled Golden Grahams until the brand was moved to Campbell Mithun Esty, Minneapolis, about a year ago.
CME handled two line extensions of the brand: small snack bars called Golden Grahams Treats that melded the cereal with chocolate and marshmallows; and, more recently, a new Cinnamon Grahams cereal that was backed by $5-10 million in ad support.
Sources said the Minneapolis-based cereal maker is still looking for a winning idea for the Golden Grahams cereal, however, and wasn’t satisfied with anything CME offered during its year-plus with the brand.
General Mills solicited ideas on the brand this summer from CME, Needham and Saatchi & Saatchi Advertising in New York, another of the client’s roster shops. The company then tested campaign proposals from each before deciding to return the business to Needham, according to sources.
General Mills would not confirm the shift at press time.
The Golden Grahams brand received about $20 million in ad support in 1996, according to Competitive Media Reporting.
All three agencies continue to handle multiple brand assignments for General Mills. Saatchi’s work includes Cheerios, Cookie Crisp, Lucky Charms, Total and Trix cereals, as well as Fruit Roll-Ups snacks. Needham also handles Colombo yogurt and Hamburger Helper, among other products.
CME today breaks a new 15-second TV spot for General Mills’ Chex Party Mix. It also handles Nature Valley granola bars, Pop Secret microwave popcorn and several other brands.