Mitsubishi Names Schematic Digital AOR (Good Luck With That)

By Matt Van Hoven Comment

Kudos are due to the winning team at Schematic, who can now call themselves the digital agency of record for Mitsubishi. The agency has confirmed it. But are they aware just how fickle this automaker is? Update: According to AdWeek, 180la won AOR status for this business, so basically they’re in the same boat.

We were notified of the win today: “Schematic will develop and implement a comprehensive, interactive strategy for Mitsubishi Motors North America (MMNA) inclusive of the Mitsubishi Web site, the company’’s social networking programs, display and search advertising, digital content creation and other interactive initiatives.”

Great. But if our memory serves, working for Mitsubishi hasn’t been easy for previous agencies. For example:

– Back in early 2008 the account still belonged to BBDO West. During the agency’s stay Mistu’s sales rose 9%. But somehow that wasn’t good enough and the automaker would later move their $190 million account to a relative unknown called Traffic.

– It was June of 2008 that Traffic won the Mitsubishi business, just three months after the business went into review and BBDO West declined to compete. They had the business just three years &#151 almost to the date. At the time, an agency representative told AdWeek: “We were aware that the contract was up and that an RFP had been issued, and decided not to participate.” Upon hearing this news, someone in the agency must have said, “so that’s how you’re gonna play it…”

– In early January 2010, Mitsubishi parted with Traffic. Though details didn’t emerge in any of the news stories published here and elsewhere, the comments told a tale of tough clients and an agency that was struggling through like everyone else. A year and a half is hardly notable, but Hyundai didn’t seem to have any problems. Their chief marketing guy just landed at GM, so you know they were doing something right. For whatever reason, Mitsubishi wasn’t firing on all eight cylinders. See what I did there?

So now the world’s most sensitive auto client is in Schematic’s hands. They’ve achieved that coveted DAOR rank and probably have a shot at doing something memorable. Lord know there’s room for good car work. Let’s see what you’ve got ladies and gentlemen.

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