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Hot Spots

Videogame Ads Score High in Likeability

In its latest consumer research on TV commercials, Intermedia Advertising Group
reported that three videogame spots scored high in likeability during the two-week period June 23-July 6. Namco's Soul Calibur II, for Nintendo GameCube, was the most-liked spot, with PlayStation 2's JAK II
No. 5 and Nintendo GameCube's WWE Wrestlemania XIX
at No. 8.

Spots for Procter & Gamble's Luvs, Tylenol Extra-Strength and Purina Dog Chow rounded out IAG's top five in likeability.

As for ad recall, IAG said Kellogg's Fruit Harvest Apple Cinnamon spot, featuring a girl picking the cereal boxes from orchard trees, ranked tops. Two KFC spots ranked No. 2 and 3, with Gatorade and Pizza Hut's "Free Comedy Classics" DVD offer completing the recall top five.


Kirshenbaum Bond & Partners, New York, has won the estimated $90 million-plus Andrew Jergens Co.
account. The independent agency beat out Havas's Arnold Worldwide, also New York. Kirshenbaum will handle creative, with its Media Kitchen
division handling media-planning duties. Interpublic Group of Cos.' Initiative Media
will continue on media buying. The personal-care account—including Curel lotion, Jergens lotion, Ban antiperspirant and John Frieda hair-care products—had been at Bozell. But, when that Interpublic shop was merged into Lowe & Partners
last winter, Jergens decided on an account review. The company feared that eventually there would be conflicts with another Lowe client, Johnson & Johnson. …

has assigned its estimated $40 million creative account to Omnicom Group's DDB Worldwide, Chicago. The agency replaces Cliff Freeman & Partners, which did not participate in the review; its last campaign touted Midas's "lifetime guarantee." DDB beat out Interpublic Group of Cos.' Campbell Mithun, Minneapolis; independent Doner, Southfield, Mich.; Publicis Groupe-backed Moroch Leo Burnett
, Dallas; and WPP Group's Y&R Advertising, Chicago. Aegis Group's Carat USA
continues with media-planning and -buying duties. …

Publicis Groupe's Fallon Worldwide
has won Subway Restaurants' creative account. The Minneapolis agency will begin working on a campaign due to break this fall. The account is estimated at more than $200 million. Finalists in the review included: Interpublic Group of Cos.'Deutsch, New York; Omnicom Group's Goodby, Silverstein & Partners, San Francisco; and independent Wieden + Kennedy, Portland, Ore. The incumbent agency, Havas' Euro RSCG MVBMS Partners, Boston, dropped out of the process last month, describing the review as "both a surprise and a disappointment." Grey Global Group's MediaCom, which handles media duties, is unaffected by the account shift.

Spies & Ties

A&E Network
is counting on an affiliate promotion to bolster consumer awareness of its upcoming original prime time series MI-5 while also assisting affiliates' local ad-sales and marketing efforts. The show, based on the exploits of the British equivalent of the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency, is co-produced by the BBC. A&E Director of Affiliate Marketing Jennifer Ball said that more than 50 affiliates and interconnects within the top 50 DMAs have signed on; they reach a combined 21 million subs. The interconnects include Comcast's CAMA
in Atlanta, the Chicago Interconnect, and MarketLink
in Detroit; Time Warner Interconnect of Twin Cities; and Cleveland Media Connect. About 60% of the participants are using the promotion for local ad sales, Ball estimated, with the rest focused on acquisition and other marketing campaigns. All must run MI-5 cross-channel promos for three weeks. The promo's top prize of a trip to London may be won by a consumer, or it can be used as an ad-sales or CSR incentive, Ball noted. …

BBC America
has sold sponsorship of new gardening show Ground Force America to The Healing Garden, a marketer of aromatherapy products, including the Healing Garden Waters Collection. In the show, four people are given 38 hours and $3,000 to clandestinely make-over derelict backyards into "garden oases." The team will focus on revamping yards in Miami, Atlanta, New Jersey and New York City. It is BBC America's first major independent production.

Red Lobster Swims With New Campaign

Darden Restaurants' Red Lobster
seafood restaurant chain has just begun a new network TV campaign themed "Share the Love." Havas' Euro RSCG Tatham Partners
in Chicago is the agency.