Spots Are True to Sam Winston's Folksiness

Advertiser: Winston Tires

Agency: Kovel Kresser & Partners, Los Angeles

Challenge: Develop a fresh campaign for a company long associated with its late founder and spokesman, Sam Winston.

The Ads: In three radio spots, worn, anthropomorphic tires beg to be replaced. "We're past our prime," one complains. "Look at Mitch in the back . . . he wasn't always that bald." In one ad, a smart-alecky tire takes a shot at warehouse stores and department stores like Sears that also sell tires. "Would you let a guy who sells peat moss put tires on your baby? Not on your life," it says. The spots list the brands sold at Winston Tire, mention a satisfaction guarantee and use the slogan "Cars ask for us by name."

Comment: These ads playfully make a point while avoiding the hard sell, staying true to the folksy flavor of TV spots that featured Sam Winston. The gags are a little predictable--but what do you expect from car tires? (Fans of "Pinky and the Brain" may recognize the voice of Maurice LaMarche, who's Brain in the cartoon.) $$+

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