Revlon Asks 4 Contenders to ‘Modernize the Brand’

In a meeting last Friday between Revlon and the agencies pitching its $100 million-plus account, the client showed its TV and print advertising spanning 40 years and asked the agencies to “modernize the brand.”

Cheryl Vitali, evp, general manager of Revlon, said representatives from Deutsch, Kirshenbaum Bond & Partners, TBWA\Chiat\Day, all in New York, and McKinney & Silver in Raleigh, N.C., attended the group briefing.

In all, about 40 people, includ-ing Revlon executives, attended the three-hour meeting in which the New York-based client presented an overview of the company and briefed the shops on an assignment for a new product launch, Vitali said.

She declined to name the new product but said it is part of the Revlon line. “We do not have the in-tention of giving multiple brands to one agency as we did in the past,” Vitali said, referring to Revlon’s longtime in-house shop, Tarlow Advertising, which handled the Revlon line, as well as Almay, Ultima II and other brands.

In November, Dick Tarlow re-signed from the agency he founded and sold to Revlon in 1989.

The agency has since been dissolved and its staffers absorbed into Revlon’s marketing department. Vitali would not comment on how other brands would be reviewed.

Shops will present their strategic and creative ideas during a round of meetings in late February. No additional meetings or cuts will be made, Vitali said, and a decision is expected by the end of March.

Media duties “were not part of the discussion” at the meeting, she added, and no decisions are being made on that aspect of the business for now.

Planning is handled in-house. KSL Media in New York does Revlon’s media buying.

For a decade, the company’s ads have featured actresses and model Cindy Crawford, whose as-sociation with the cosmetics gi-ant will be phased out over the next year.