LENNOX HEATS UP FIRST NAT'L BRAND ADS IN 2 YRS.

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Lennox Industries today launches its first national TV branding campaign since moving its account to GSD&M almost two years ago.

After GSD&M won the account, the Austin, Texas, agency first focused on creating 3,500 co-op TV spots for more than 1,500 independent dealers in which the actual dealers interacted with spokescharacter Dave Lennox.

The agency created about a dozen shell ads that could be customized for individual Lennox heating and air conditioning dealers. The spots, which broke last year, juxtaposed the dealers with the actor playing the founder of the 101-year-old company.

The co-op effort itself was extra ambitious for Lennox.

CHANGE IN CO-OP ADS

"Historically, we had always tagged the dealers at the end of spots. This time, we wanted to integrate them into the commercials without giving up any of the branding," said Bill Moltner, manager-advertising and promotions. Dealers, whose commitment to the company's co-op program had been flagging, greeted the new $10 million co-op effort with enthusiasm, he said.

SHIFT IN MEDIA

Lennox now wants to build on its local efforts with the national campaign. The company is shifting a large part of its estimated $10 million ad budget into national media, quadrupling 1995 spending on national TV.

Three new Dave Lennox spots, set in a turn-of-the-century general store, will attempt to sell old-fashion service and trust.

"A national [media] plan will give us coverage in a lot of markets we've been missing, since not all of our dealers participate in our local programs," Mr. Moltner said. "It also streamlines our advertising and will make it easier to administer."

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