Legacy reviews firms on Truth anti-smoking effort

WASHINGTON: Legacy, the foundation behind the long-running "Truth" smoking-prevention campaign, is planning a creative and media agency review for its marquee outreach effort.

WASHINGTON: Legacy, the foundation behind the long-running “Truth” smoking-prevention campaign, is planning a creative and media agency review for its marquee outreach effort.

The agency evaluation is part of a planned increased investment the foundation wants to put into the campaign over the next three years. For now, it is only reviewing its creative and media planning and buying services. The organization expects to make a decision by year's end on the firms it will hire.

Exact budgets have not yet been finalized, but the foundation anticipates spending at levels consistent with the campaign's earliest years, which translates to an annual range of $50 million to $60 million in paid media.

The group's incumbent advertising agency is Arnold Worldwide, based in Boston, while PhD handles media planning and buying.

Once the review is over, the foundation will assess its PR needs and make a determination as to whether it will require support from an outside firm, said Julia Cartwright, SVP of communications at the foundation. There is no incumbent PR AOR on the account.

“As a cost-savings measure, that work has been managed for several years by our in-house communications team,” she said.

The efforts performed by the wining advertising and media-buying firms will supplement Truth's grassroots and digital approach, the group said.

Last September, the foundation landed a spot on the FDA's roster of companies eligible to win work for tobacco-cessation programs. It was the first time the organization was named a potential prime contractor for a federal anti-smoking initiative.

The FDA has yet to award work to the foundation. In the instance it is selected to lead an effort, the group has listed Fenton and Hispanic PR firm Sensis as subcontractors.

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