Magazine article Black Enterprise

Breakthroughs for Black-Owned Agencies

Magazine article Black Enterprise

Breakthroughs for Black-Owned Agencies

Article excerpt

Don Coleman and Burrell advertising firms land Kmart, General Mills accounts

Two of the nation's largest black-owned advertising agencies made breakthroughs in the advertising industry by scoring major contracts with large corporations in May. Don Coleman Advertising Inc. (No. 1 on the BE ADVERTISING AGENCIES list with billings of $270 million), which partnered with True North Communications in 1999, was named the multicultural advertising agency of record for Kmart Corp., and Burrell Communications Group L.L.C. (No. 3 on the BE ADVERTISING AGENCIES list with billings of $179 million), which partnered with Publicis Networks in 2000, was named the agency of record for African American consumers for General Mills Inc. The deals represent significant advances in each agency's efforts to expand its core advertising business.

Don Coleman's deal with Kmart represents an important breakthrough for black-owned agencies. The Southfield, Michigan-based agency, which has handled Kmart's African American advertising and marketing since 1997, now gains responsibility for all Hispanic advertising and promotions as well. The agency has the opportunity to demonstrate its ability to reach a bilingual and multicultural audience for Kmart, a $40 billion company with more than 2,100 retail outlets. Kmart would not reveal its advertising and marketing budget, but the deal is believed to be worth millions.

"Don Coleman Advertising has provided excellent advertising and marketing support for Kmart for the last four years," says Larry Davis, senior vice president of advertising and marketing for Kmart. Don A. Coleman, president of Don Coleman Advertising, says using his firm for all multicultural advertising creates cost efficiencies for Kmart and helps Kmart integrate its messages to its consumers. "We do good work and Kmart recognizes that. And we already have a multicultural team in place," says Coleman. …

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