GMO in Deep With Monterey Bay Aquarium

The Monterey Bay Aquarium’s $1-2 million ad account may be just a small drop in the billings bucket for an established ad agency. But Goldberg Moser O’Neill, which recently won ad duties for the property, figures the account’s value in larger terms.
“The mission of the Monterey Bay Aquarium is to inspire conservation of the oceans,” said Fred Goldberg, chairman and chief executive officer of the San Francisco shop. “Our challenge will be to continue to raise their quest in this regard. The Monterey Bay Aquarium is an amazing place, and we’re pleased [to be involved] with their efforts.”
GMO prevailed in a brief review that also included Butler, Shine & Stern, Sausalito, Calif., and fellow San Francisco agencies Citron Haligman Bedecarrƒ and TBWA Chiat/Day. The latter was making its first pitch since opening here six months ago to service client Levi Strauss & Co.
Sources said the client did not request speculative creative work, but rather held “chemistry” meetings with each of the shops.
A new campaign for the aquarium will incorporate print and broadcast and run primarily in California, Goldberg said. It is unclear exactly when that effort will be unveiled, he said, since most ideas are still in the “strategy” stage.
“Millions of people visit the Monterey Bay Aquarium each year, but there are many Californians who have not visited the property, or don’t know that it even exists,” Goldberg said. “[Our client] wants to reach these people, and make the aquarium a destination spot.”
The aquarium’s recently opened “Outer Bay” exhibits are ripe for new advertising, according to Goldberg. They include large jellyfish “galleries” and a million-gallon “indoor ocean,” viewed through what the client claims is “the largest window on Earth.”
The aquarium, located in Monterey, Calif., is home to more than 300,000 creatures and more than 570 species of plants and animals.