NEWS: AMV switches Sainsbury’s team in effort to reclaim leading spot

David Abbott, the long time creative driving force behind Sainsbury’s advertising, is taking a back seat as it bids to reclaim its crown as king of British supermarketers.

David Abbott, the long time creative driving force behind Sainsbury’s

advertising, is taking a back seat as it bids to reclaim its crown as

king of British supermarketers.



In the most significant acknowledgment yet of the creative succession at

Abbott Mead Vickers BBDO, the new national TV branding campaign

beginning this Thursday is being handled not by the agency’s creative

director, but Peter Souter, who was named as his deputy and heir

apparent in January (Campaign, 12 January).



Souter and his art director, Paul Brazier, have produced four 40-second

commercials, breaking the almost exclusive hold that Abbott and his

creative partner, Ron Brown, had on Sainsbury’s TV work.



Souter said: ‘It was quite scary when David threw the brief at us

because Sainsbury’s is a very senior client. But it’s been a great

confidence builder and I’m proud of the work we’ve done.’



Sainsbury’s sees the new initiative as the start of a marketing campaign

to reverse its fortunes in the wake of an almost pounds 100 million fall

in profit.



The commercials also mark the probable end of the five-year series of

celebrity recipe films, although Souter declined to rule out their

return. ‘We won’t be doing any for a while, but we have an open mind,’

he said.



The latest films, which were directed by John O’Driscoll through Paul

Weiland Films, attempt to match Sainsbury’s reputation for quality with

the price claims of its biggest rivals, Tesco, Asda and Safeway, using

the line, ‘Special food at everyday prices’.



The first commercial shows a family barbecue in which a husband tries to

take theÿ20credit for exotic and delicious recipes, while his wife points

out that they come ready-prepared from Sainsbury’s and ‘don’t cost

much’.



Farah Ramzan, the Abbott Mead board account director for Sainsbury’s,

said: ‘We’ve now found a way of bringing people in to express their own

preferences in a way which is real and likeable.’



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