Brewer's 'Peasant Living'

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Thinking about the 42-year relationship between W.B. Doner and what is now Stroh, I recall a story about Brod Doner, who founded the agency, and Herb Fried, who is now chairman. The two were flying from the agency's home town of Detroit to visit a Baltimore client, National Brewing Co. It was a fine day, and as they flew over Chesapeake Bay, Brod turned to Herb and said, "This is the land of pleasant living." His line still appears on cans of National Bohemian beer.

Doner's relationship with National survived the brewer's acquisition by G. Heileman Brewing Co. and, later, Heileman's acquisition by Stroh.

The agency created the original advertising for National's Colt 45 back in 1964. Featuring the line: "In the dull and commonplace occurrences of day-to-day living, one thing stands out as a completely unique experience," the campaign ran for 11 years. Doner went on to create the memorable Colt 45 campaign that featured singer Billie Dee Williams.

The agency lost Chicago-based Heileman's business in 1990; to win us back, Doner set up a Chicago-style sports bar in its Detroit lobby. The bar featured a Cubs game on TV and, of course, Heileman's Old Style beer.

The pitch worked: In 1994 we gave the agency back several Heileman brands, including Colt 45. The next year, Doner won the other core Heileman brands.

In addition to delivering terrific creative, Doner has been a true partner to us. The agency has helped us with research and other day-to-day work, and it shepherds our advertising dollars closely.

For example, when we recently shot two commercials, Doner brought the productions in under budget-a practically unheard of occurrence. That's what happens when an agency is good at what it does.

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