At the end of November, the agency formerly known as Kranzler Kingsley becomes a little less Kranzler. On November 28, Wayne Kranzler, chairman and founding partner along with LaRoy Kingsley of KK BOLD, rides off into the metaphorical sunset of retirement. Wayne has been and remains a large part of KK BOLD, and we’d like to celebrate his career by recounting just a few of his lofty achievements.
In 1972, Wayne was hired by Flint Advertising in Fargo after graduating from NDSU. He was hired as a copywriter to work on the Melroe account. He says it was because they wanted a farm kid on the account, “someone who knew the difference between a combine and a bailer.” Because of his knowledge of said difference, Wayne also served as an information specialist at the North Dakota Wheat Commission from 1974 to 1978.
In 1978, Wayne left the North Dakota Wheat Commission and started work as an account executive/writer at, Candee Saueressig Advertising & Marketing. He was promoted to director of account services in 1984, right before the office burned down (probably just a coincidence). In 1987, Candee left the agency, and Wayne became partners with Bob Saueressig. Then in 1989, Saueressig also left, and Wayne became partners with LaRoy Kingsley, and thus was born Kranzler Kingsley. You may have heard of them.
Wayne counts amongst his career highlights:
• Having created “Hedahl’s Has It” in 1979, which was his first real multimedia campaign, with TV, billboards and a jingle.
• In 1980, worked on the first election campaign for Byron Dorgan in his successful race for the US House of Representatives.
• In 1986, Wayne was involved in his first Senate campaign for Kent Conrad. Early in the campaign, Conrad was down by 30 points just after Labor Day. On Election Day, he won by 4 points. Wayne worked on every marketing campaign for both Conrad and Dorgan going forward, overseeing media placement, competitive research and some production.
• Over the years, Wayne headed a total of 26 statewide measure campaigns, including 20 “vote no” campaigns. In that time, he went 20-0 on the no-votes. He was particularly proud of the 2012 “Keep It Local” campaign which handily defeated a measure which would have eliminated state property taxes.
Wayne says his favorite part of advertising is the creative process: creating things that achieve results, sell products, win elections and make the cash register ring. He also enjoyed writing TV for political campaigns. A favorite example of that was the 3-Legged Stool TV spot which was produced to help defeat Measures 1 & 2 in the 2008 general election. During the 2 week period that commercial ran, tracking polls showed more than a 20% positive change in the numbers. He greatly enjoyed the sense of fulfillment he got from weekly measurement of election tracking polls, the effectiveness of what is created and produced being immediately measurable in how it moved the needle in the public’s opinion gauge.
Now as he prepares for retirement, Wayne says the things he’s looking forward to doing are more fishing, vegging on the couch in front of the TV, but mainly traveling with Jean, his wife. They may join one of their two kids, Matt and Brooke, who live in Las Vegas and Portland respectively. “Whichever one gives us a grandkid first!” he jokes, not really joking.
All of us at KK BOLD are, obviously, greatly indebted to Wayne as both our employer and our friend. KK BOLD began life with five employees. 25 years later, the staff now numbers 35. That number doesn’t count all the employees who have come and gone, each of whom owe a debt to Wayne Kranzler for what he’s done for their careers. We’ll be sad to have him not around the office anymore, but we’ll all be happy to see him achieve the kind of retirement that his career clearly deserves. This is just another chapter in what has so far been a highly engrossing book, and we can all hardly wait to see what happens next for Wayne Kranzler.