Radio Rentals has put its pounds 11 million ad account out to
formal pitch, only three months after abandoning a similar review in the
summer. Its incumbent of six years, WCRS, has declined to repitch.
Mike Ryan, the marketing and merchandise director of Radio Rentals’
parent, Thorn UK, said the review - which is on the creative account
only - was genuine this time. He explained that the previous attempt had
been cancelled shortly after his arrival in July in order to hold a full
strategic review internally. This had been completed, prompting massive
structural changes at Thorn. These effectively pooled the marketing,
purchasing and merchandising functions across Thorn’s three main brands:
Radio Rentals, DER Direct and Easiview.
’We are now in a position to go out and have meaningful conversations
with agencies,’ Ryan said.
In the summer, Radio Rentals hired Agency Assessments to conduct an
initial trawl for agencies. It is not clear whether the same shops have
been approached this time, but a search team, headed by Ryan, is said to
have visited four or five London agencies. The pitches will be held in
mid-January and a final decision is expected in February.
Radio Rentals’ media is handled by Mediapolis.
Radio Rentals claims a customer base of more than 1.2 million and has
more than two million units on hire. But it has suffered in recent years
from the decline of the rentals sector, as a growing number of people
now buy rather than rent household equipment such as televisions.
While Radio Rentals conducts most of its rental business through high
street retail sites, DER Direct rents a similar range of brands
direct-to-home through catalogues. Easiview rents directly to those
lower income customers who prefer a slot meter method of payment.
Ryan, Radio Rentals’ fourth marketing boss in five years, was previously
the European marketing director for Crazy George’s - Thorn’s furniture
and electrical goods chain.