Happier Meals on Tap

Dave & Buster’s has consolidated its estimated $6 million ad account at One Square Inc., the holding company based here that includes Square One Advertising, Southwest Media and other marketing services firms.

Square One was awarded creative duties without a review. Interpublic Group’s Launch Partnership in Irving, Texas, handled creative chores on the account for about a year. Client vice president of marketing Stuart Myers said the consolidation was a financial decision, not one based on Launch’s performance.

Southwest Media has done planning and buying for the Dallas client, which operates 32 restaurant/entertainment complexes, since 1997.

The sister companies will be responsible for advertising, collateral, point-of-purchase materials, sales promotions and an incentive program driven through e-mail communications, said holding company CEO Bob Nichol. “What makes this exciting to me is they’re going to hold us accountable for driving sales in the new year,” he said. “And because we’re working with every part of our business, we think we can achieve that.”

New ads, set to debut next month, will likely return to the “high-energy, exciting and fun” feel of past campaigns, Myers said. Dave & Buster’s, whose ad tagline is “It’s always a good time,” has been promoting its dining experience in an effort to attract mid-week customers. The client also plans to more aggressively tout itself as a special events venue.

CMR reports Dave & Buster’s spent $6 million on media in 2001. Myers said that figure is “underreported,” but declined to cite total ad expenditures.