Via Agency Tapped to Handle Perdue's Marketing

Move Ends 40-Year Partnership With Interpublic Group of Cos.' Deutsch

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Maine-based indie Via Agency has been selected to handle lead ad duties for Perdue chicken after a review.

It marks a major change for the chicken marketer, which conducted a search earlier this year after a 40-year relationship with Interpublic Group of Cos.' Deutsch and predecessor shops came to an end.

"During the review process, Via demonstrated a keen understanding of our business and a business-like approach to our marketing strategy," said Perdue Chief Marketing Officer John Bartelme in a statement to Ad Age . "Their emphasis on creativity across traditional and digital platforms and on analytics/ROI, in addition to their impressive client roster, convinced our team that Via was a great fit." Agencies believed to be involved in the review included Interpublic's Mullen out of North Carolina and indie shop McKinney.

Via -- which was named Ad Age 's Small Agency of the Year for 2011 -- will handle overall marketing strategy, creative, social media, and coordinating the efforts of Perdue's other roster agencies. Santa Monica, Calif.-based consultancy Select Resources International oversaw the review.

RJ Palmer will continue to be agency of record for media planning and buying, including traditional and digital media. Fleishman-Hillard, which handled social media, had been invited to participate in the review but social media will now be taken over by Via. Other Perdue agencies include Omnicom's Alma DDB for Hispanic Marketing, Catapult Marketing for promotion and Marriner Marketing for website development.

Perdue in 2010 spent about $18.8 million on U.S. measured media, according to Kantar, up 42.4% from 2009.

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