Once upon a time, I lived in Chicago and I spent some time freelancing for Frankel.
Bud Frankel was a pioneer in sales promotion, and I thought it was pretty cool to see him walking the halls as Chairman of the firm he founded, led and eventually sold. The sales price in 2000 was estimated at $140 to $150 million, and Mr. Frankel owned 70% of the company at the time.
Frankel was eventually folded into Arc Worldwide, which is Leo Burnett’s shopper marketing, a.k.a. brand activation agency.
Now, Ad Age reports that Publicis Groupe is expanding Arc’s footprint, starting with the opening of four additional offices in India, Brazil, Mexico and Colombia by the end of the year — making a total of 29 of Leo Burnett’s 85 offices stocked with Arc talent and capabilities.
In North America, Arc’s footprint is limited to San Francisco and Chicago.
Arc claims to provide expertise in shopper marketing, promotion, direct/CRM/loyalty, eCommerce, social, mobile and live media. Why content marketing is not in this mix, I’m not sure. Be that as it may, he who creates the most lasting bonds with customers wins. Advertising isn’t too swift in this area. I’m going with the below-the-line shops, for the win.
Today, Arc accounts for 20% of Leo Burnett’s revenue worldwide and 25% of its U.S. revenue. And the category os poised for steady growth. Annual shopper-marketing spending will grow somewhere in the 10% to 15% range over the next few years, said Peter Cloutier, the CMO at shopper agency Catapult.