AT&T NAMES FCB DIRECT FOR ALL COLLEGE MARKETING: BRONNER SHOP LOSES IN MOVE TO CONSOLIDATE THE $50 MIL ACCOUNT

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AT&T Corp. awarded its college direct-marketing account to Foote, Cone & Belding Direct, New York, taking the business from Bronner Slosberg Humphrey, Boston.

The move marries all college marketing, with billings estimated at $50 million, at one agency. FCB Direct parent Foote, Cone & Belding, a unit of True North Communications, already handled college-market print advertising.

`ONE FACE' FOR COLLEGE CROWD

"Bronner had been doing a very good job with the direct college program, so it was only moved to FCB to have it integrated," said Ira Cohen, consumer marketing communications director at AT&T. "We want to come across with one face to our target audience."

AT&T's general advertising is split between FCB (consumer and wireless) and Y&R Advertising, (corporate branding and business-to-business), both New York.

Bronner continues to handle direct marketing for consumer and business-to-business acquisition and retention for AT&T. Wunderman Cato Johnson handles direct marketing for AT&T Worldnet and international.

"We're the agency responsible for half their business," said Tina Cohoe, chief creative officer of FCB Direct Worldwide and president of FCB Direct's New York office. "I think it gives us an advantage that a stand-alone direct agency can't have. We have a fully integrated approach."

Anne DeLorenzo, senior VP-group management director at FCB Direct, last fall led the charge in developing print ads for the college market that were response-driven, touting the company's Student Advantage, One Rate and Organizer discount and long-distance programs.

"We internally decided to put more of a marketing focus on it," said Ms. Cohoe. "We made it more response-driven."

HARD-HITTING MEDIA

"We developed a proprietary targeted database model for AT&T driven by their business objectives," Ms. DeLorenzo said. "We also made sure we had ads that were delivering brand messages, but also had the opportunity to generate response, and we leveraged the media in more hard-hitting ways, like college newspaper inserts and take-ones."

FCB will develop all print and direct mail to a universe of 14 million college students, as well as collateral materials such as on-campus posters and banners.

"We see the college market as incredibly important to us," said AT&T's Mr. Cohen. "They are what we'd call the high communicators of the future, and once we get them, we hope they'll be customers for life."

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