MANILA (AdAge.com) -- In what could be a test case for similar moves, Unilever has grouped its below-the-line marketing business in the Philippines for three of its brands, Pond's, Creamsilk and Rexona, with Bates 141.
The appointment follows a pitch between the winning WPP agency; McCann Worldgroup's Momentum and Lowe Worldwide, both part of Interpublic Group of Cos.; and an independent local agency, Dyll Communications. Unilever has never bundled marketing for these three brands in the Philippines before and this move is believed to be a first for Asia, and possibly a test case to consider this strategy for other markets.
Unilever wants to showcase the strengths of the Pond's skin-care brand, Creamsilk hair-care brand and its deodorant brand, Rexona, under a single activation campaign aimed at teens that allows each brand to "have its own identity and requirements. "
"The challenge really is how we can find a way to tie them all together," said Joey Ong, executive creative director of Bates 141 in Manila.
The agency already handles creative for two Unilever food brands, Knorr and Lady's Choice, in the Philippines. The Bates 141 appointment does not affect Unilever's assignments for above-the-line advertising in the Philippines. Ogilvy & Mather handles creative for Pond's in that Asian market, JWT has the Creamsilk account and Lowe oversees Rexona. Media buying in the Philippines is handled by a local agency, Masscom.