Is the beer stein half full or half empty? Certainly the folks at Cramer-Krasselt/Chicago want --in the worst way -- to believe it's still half full. But the fact remains the agency, which has worked on the Corona business since 1993, has lost a bit of its grip on the business.
Chicago-based Crown Imports, which distributes Corona Extra and Corona Light in the United States, said Thursday it is giving the Corona Light ad business to Publicis/New York on a project basis -- at least at first. Crown Import sources said the project could evolve into an agency of record relationship at some point.
Light brews, of course, have been the most aggressively marketed beer products in recent years, which suggests Publicis may be getting the best part of the Corona account with which to work. And what of that ad work that will come from Publicis for Corona Light? Sources say it isn't clear yet whether Publicis will try for something that resembles the low-key touch C-K has made famous in its advertising for Corona and Corona Light over a number of years. But it's likely, as one source put it, that Publicis will come up with a campaign "somewhere down the beach," which is another way of saying Publicis will offer up creative that won't be easily confused with the work C-K did on the business.
For now, C-K appears to be content with what it's been left with, but there has to be a bit of uneasiness within the agency ranks now that Crown Imports has made this move toward Publicis. Time will surely tell us whether that beer stein we previously mentioned is now indeed half full or half empty at Cramer-Krasselt.