Unilever in talks with agencies on frozen food CRM

LONDON - Unilever Ice Cream & Frozen Food is reviewing the direct marketing accounts of its Birds Eye and Walls Carte D'Or brands.

The decision comes as ICF considers shifting spend from traditional advertising to customer relationship marketing.

Marketing has learned that the company has held talks with several direct agencies about the CRM strategy for its Birds Eye's frozen vegetables range and Carte D'Or ice-cream brand, with a pitch expected to take place in early December.

Having trialled CRM on a limited basis for several of its frozen food ranges, Unilever plans to step up activity and give greater focus to relationship marketing initiatives via direct mail and online.

It currently uses several agencies for its direct marketing, including Joshua and The Marketing Store, while Zentropy Partners handles its online work. However, the FMCG giant is understood to be keen to consolidate its business into a single shop to boost effectiveness.

The successful agency will oversee the increased activity, and will be expected to manage and exploit Unilever's customer databases.

The Birds Eye and Walls Carte D'Or brands spent £1.6m on direct marketing in the year to October 31, according to Nielsen Media Research.

Unilever embarked on a £60m global revamp of Birds Eye in February to revitalise the frozen food category. The relaunch was supported by a £30m ad campaign created by Bartle Bogle Hegarty, which won the business at the end of last year.

The revamp was followed by the launch of an overhauled Birds Eye logo and several recipe innovations, including a Steamfresh line, which is now being rolled out.

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