Ogilvy Chicago Wins Jimmy Dean

by Jamel D. Nelson , AdForum

Jimmy Dean, classic maker of breakfast sausages and self-described “No. 1 protein breakfast brand in America,” has chosen Ogilvy Chicago as its new creative agency of record after an unannounced review.

TBWA/Chiat/Day held the account for more than a decade before the client launched its review in late 2014. The change affects only Jimmy Dean and none of the other brands owned by parent company Tyson Foods (Sara Lee, Hillshire Farm, Ball Park, etc.).

From the client:

“The Jimmy Dean brand has appointed Chicago-based Ogilvy & Mather as the brand’s new creative agency of record. Ogilvy replaces TBWA/Chiat/Day out of Los Angeles. Chicago-based Ogilvy & Mather will be responsible for driving the overall strategy and creative vision for the brand.”
TBWA established the client’s tagline “Eat Jimmy Dean” when it won the account from Leo Burnett in 2004. The latter agency’s final campaign for the client marked the first time that the brand’s ads had not featured its country star namesake (who died in 2010), and last year the New York Times noted the company’s decision to move into an entirely new space: the dinner table.

That article concerned what would be TBWA’s last work on the account, which attempted to re-position the client as a leading frozen lunch and dinner provider by focusing on its 16 new offerings with the help of the long-established “Sun Guy” character (also known as actor Haynes Brooke), the “Sunniest Day of the Year” site, and the #FollowTheSun hashtag.

The news marks a major win for Ogilvy, which just announced a series of promotions and a renewed focus on digital/analytical work across its North American organization. At the time of the New York Times article linked above, Jimmy Dean dominated the “hand-held breakfast items” category with “52.8 percent” of more than one billion in total revenues. Its revenues increased across categories in 2013, when it spent $61.6 million in advertising according to Kantar Media.

Tyson Foods did not elaborate on plans for future campaigns and Ogilvy had no comment on the win.

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