Retail giant Macy’s, one of the biggest advertisers in its sector, has chosen BBDO New York as its new creative agency of record after a competitive review.
“As part of the next evolution of Macy’s marketing approach and following a closed review among a select group of agencies, we have selected BBDO New York as our new creative agency of record, effective immediately,” a spokesperson said today. “BBDO New York will be a great partner for us as we execute our ‘Familiar to Favorite’ strategy centered on building Macy’s brand love, fashion authority, loyalty and value.”
The news comes as the classic company makes more dramatic changes to counter the challenges stemming from the rise of ecommerce and declining foot traffic in recent years. Earlier this week, Macy’s hired eBay’s North America svp Hal Lawton as president in an effort to better target the digital audience.
The company also announced that it would be cutting 100 jobs in an attempt to streamline its management structure and achieve what CEO Jeff Gennette described as part of a long-term plan to “grow sales faster at better margins.”
According to multiple parties with direct knowledge of the matter, BBDO participated in a closed pitch that included Ogilvy and Publicis to win the business this summer.
A BBDO spokesperson deferred to the client for comment today. The agency also has a direct connection to the Macy’s marketing team. In May, Jim Reath, who served as evp, head of retail at BBDO New York and ran the Lowe’s and Toys R Us accounts, moved to Macy’s as its svp of marketing. Last August, Macy’s also hired former Toys R Us CMO Rich Lennox, who had been a BBDO client since 2015, to fill the same role.
Macy’s, which has long eschewed the agency of record label, worked with J. Walter Thompson until 2016, but after launching a review the previous year, the company picked BBH and Figliulo&Partners to handle various aspects of its creative advertising business. BBH worked for the retailer on a project related to the Thanksgiving Day Parade while Figliulio&Partners signed a long-term contract. Representatives for the latter agency did not respond to requests for comment.
According to the latest numbers from Kantar Media, Macy’s spent $681 million on measured media in 2016 and a combined $243 million during the first two quarters of this year. The company’s biggest marketing push precedes the holiday season.
Dentsu’s Carat became the company’s U.S. media agency of record in 2012 and won the global assignment the following year.