S&W Refines Meineke’s Discount Image

DALLAS Stone & Ward introduces Meineke’s new name and tagline in spots breaking Feb. 17 that feature longtime spokesperson George Foreman.

Meineke Discount Mufflers has changed its name to Meineke Car Care Center to better reflect its products and service offerings, the Charlotte, N.C.-based client said.

The tag changes to “Right service. Right price” from “You won’t pay a lot, but you’ll get a lot,” which Meineke has used since 1983.

One 10-second television spot from the Little Rock, Ark., agency features Foreman saying, “You’ve always trusted Meineke for mufflers. Now you can trust them to service a whole lot more. Meineke Car Care Center—our new name says it all.”

In the 15-second version, Foreman, the client’s spokesperson for nearly nine years, includes the new tagline after the name.

Foreman opens both spots standing in front of a sign with the company’s old logo, which is plastered on a board that sits on an easel. He takes a step to the right and a wall quickly fills with an array of auto-related products like tires and motor oil. Foreman steps aside once again and the company’s new logo and tag are displayed.

“The media strategy is mostly 10-second spots so we wanted to focus on keeping the message simple and clear to give the customer a believable reason to understand why Meineke was changing its name,” agency creative director Jay Cranford said. “[The wall of products] was a quick way to visually show that.”

Cranford said Foreman, who remains under contract with the chain, continues to test well in focus groups. “He’s really likeable,” Cranford said. “Women like him because they want to pinch his cheeks and men see him as a man’s man.”

The shop chose the new tagline because it maintains the chain’s discount heritage, Cranford said, while attacking a perception that Meineke is only associated with mufflers. “The reality was just the opposite,” he said

The work is the first from S&W, which won creative duties on the $18 million account in an October review. A larger brand campaign is scheduled to break in April.

The spots will run on network channels in spot markets.

Media Partnership in Norwalk, Conn., handles media for the aftermarket operation, which has 900 stores in the U.S., Canada, Mexico. Guatemala, Venezuela and the Caribbean.