Wendy’s International Inc., part of Wendy’s/Arby’s Group Inc., named the Kaplan Thaler Group as its lead creative agency with responsibilities encompassing advertising, media planning, digital marketing, and restaurant activation.

Kaplan Thaler was selected from a group of five agencies that participated in a review process involving Wendy’s senior executives and franchise representatives.

“This announcement is an important next step as we focus on driving innovation, strengthening our marketing communications, and executing our turnaround plan for the Wendy’s brand,” says Wendy’s chief marketing officer Ken Calwell. “This is a part of our overall brand strategy to build Wendy’s reputation as the quality leader in the hamburger quick-service restaurant category with enhanced customer service, breakthrough new products, improved core menu choices, and leading-edge marketing.”

Wendy’s disciplined brand-building process began with the creation of Wendy’s/Arby’s Group in September 2008. This process has included implementation of a clear brand strategy and aligned business objectives; reorganization of marketing team resources; overhaul of the R&D and market testing approach; and creation of a robust product pipeline, which includes a record number of products in test in the second half of 2009.

Wendy’s will introduce an integrated communications campaign and a new advertising direction during the fourth quarter of 2009.

The next step of the agency review process—to be completed later in 2009 in collaboration with Kaplan Thaler—will be the selection of agencies to support Wendy’s multi-cultural marketing, media buying, and public relations efforts.

News, Wendy's