Northway Vies For Retail Ads Of Primestar

By Matt Surman

NEW YORK–The Northway Group in Dallas and RBT/Strum of Cherry Hill, N.J., are waiting to see which one will benefit from a consolidation of retail advertising duties planned by Primestar, the satellite television company.

RBT/Strum has been selected by Primestar to handle a promotional project that could lead to the marketer’s retail ad business as well, the company said last week.

The shop defeated Tierney & Partners and The Weightman Group, both in Philadelphia, and McAdams, Richmond & Ong of Bala Cynwyd, Pa., for the assignment, according to Mark Dunn, director of advertising and promotions at the Bala Cynwyd-based client.

RBT/Strum will launch a newspaper, radio and point-of-purchase promotion in September and October, pushing a reduced installation price, programming packages and a new remote control. Primestar will spend a total of $20 million on the promotion, which will include image ads from agency of record Adler Boschetto Peebles & Partners, New York, Dunn said.

The Northway Group currently handles retail advertising for Primestar services sold through Radio Shack. The agency will handle a smaller project for the client in the fourth quarter.

Primestar will consolidate its retail ads into one account and will choose either RBT/Strum or Northway to handle the business based upon how each performs its respective assignment, Dunn said.

That agency selection will be made by October. ‘We’ll be making a decision between (RBT/Strum and Northway) following the assignment,’ he said.

ABP&P’s role will not be affected by the decision. ‘We’ll have two distinct agencies: one for branding, one for retail,’ Dunn explained.

Primestar is a joint venture of Time Warner Cable, TeleCommuni-cations Inc., Cox Cable Communications, Comcast Cable Corp. and Continental Cablevision.

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