Miller set to launch Lite effort as comms realigns

MILWAUKEE: Miller Brewing is realigning its communications staff, while preparing for the first campaign for Miller Lite by the label's new AOR, Crispin Porter Bogusky, Miami.

MILWAUKEE: Miller Brewing is realigning its communications staff, while preparing for the first campaign for Miller Lite by the label's new AOR, Crispin Porter Bogusky, Miami.

PRWeek has learned that the new effort from CP+B makes hay of King Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table. Except in Miller's version, it's "Guys of the Square Table."

Peter Marino of Dig Communications, who currently is serving as interim director of media relations at Miller, said the ad effort will be supported with PR. "The advertising is still in development, and certainly the PR components of that are still in development, as well."

He added that the national campaign will not be on air until late spring. Miller - which last year had split ad duties at Ogilvy & Mather, New York; Weiden & Kennedy, Portland, OR; and The Martin Agency, Richmond, VA - this year consolidated at CP&B.

Miller earlier this year began a program to restructure its communications team ("SABMiller bolsters in-house PR staff to support product relaunches," PRWeek, January 16, 2006). Nehl Horton, SVP of communications and government affairs, said in January that PR would play a big part in the company's attempt to unseat Anheuser-Busch as the number one beer company in US sales. SABMiller is the second-largest US brewer, but Miller's once-profitable Miller Lite brand sunk to number three in 2000, trailing Bud Light and Coors Light.

Horton had said one of the reasons for realigning the PR staff was to create a more cohesive relationship between marketing and PR, both of which will play a role in the new Miller Lite campaign.

Miller is still looking to fill such PR positions as director of brand PR, manager of employee communications, and manager of brand PR for economy brands.

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