Coles adds DDB and TBWA to supermarkets roster

Coles supermarkets has widened its agency roster, with DDB and TBWA joining lead agency Big Red.

Big Red has been on the Coles account for a decade, with founder Ted Horton the architect of the brand’s in-your-face “Down Down” messaging featuring giant red hands and Status Quo.

Big Red’s 2013 Status Quo campaign helped reinvigorate Coles sales

Both DDB and TBWA have both been working on Coles Financial Services since last year.

Coles, which told Mumbrella that Big Red would remain as lead agency, described the announcement as a move “to add bench strength”. It said the strategy was “providing the bandwidth needed to manage Coles supermarkets’ core marketing activities at the same time as meeting increased demand for customer communications related to the current pandemic”.

Like all Australian supermarkets, Coles has seen shelves cleared and staff abused as panic buying took hold from. those concerned about a pandemic-generated lockdown.

Coles Group CMO Lisa Ronson said: “Big Red have been an amazing support for us, and their understanding of who we are has really helped us to reach out to customers at a time of tremendous uncertainty. Their ongoing counsel coupled with the added resources of DDB and TBWA assures me that our in-house teams have the support they need, so they can fulfil our ambition to sustainably feed all Australians at this difficult time.”

Horton said: “We understand the massive impact that COVID-19 has had on the Australian public, and the critical role that Coles plays in supporting Australians. We look forward to continuing to guide and support the Coles marketing team to communicate with their customers across the nation.”

DDB CEO Andrew Little said: “We’re greatly looking forward to working with both the Coles Supermarkets and Big Red teams to help keep customers informed on how Coles is working to meet their needs.”

And TBWA Melbourne CEO, Kimberlee Wells, said: “In our work with the Coles Financial Services team we’ve seen just how influential the Coles brand is in our community. We are grateful for this opportunity to help them continue meeting the market in a positive way at such a critical time.”


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