Sara Lee Appoints Butler Shine Stern to Handle Hillshire Farms

Indie Shop Succeeds Omnicom Group's TBWA

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Butler Shine Stern & Partners has been named agency of record for Sara Lee's Hillshire Farms brand after a review, succeeding Omnicom Group's TBWA/Chiat/Day on the account.

The Sausalito, Calif., indie shop will handle creative and strategy for Hillshire Farms across its portfolio of lunchmeat products and smoked sausages. TBWA, which didn't participate in the pitch, declined to comment. The shop remains on the marketer's roster, continuing to handles the Jimmy Dean brand of breakfast foods.

"We looked at many agencies, but after careful consideration we decided to appoint BSSP given their insightful thinking, strategic approach and passion for our brand shown over the course of the process," a Hillshire spokeswoman said. "We are excited to have them join our Hillshire Farm team and expect we'll see many great things to come."

For Butler Shine, this win follows the shop picking up restaurant chain El Pollo Loco's marketing account. But the agency recently parted ways with RadioShack, which is slated to announce a new partner soon, and chose not to participate in the retailer's review. Butler Shine is also defending its plum BMW Mini account.

In 2011, Sara Lee spent $82.5 million on domestic measured media; about $18 million of that was devoted to the Hillshire Farms brand. The overall spend is down significantly from $123.3 million in 2010.

Sara Lee seems to be broadly rethinking its marketing partners. Last summer, the company changed agencies on its Ball Park hot-dog brand after a review, handing the business to Publicis in Seattle.


Contributing: E.J. Schultz

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