Arnold Hires DraftFCB Exec as Digital Chief

BOSTON Following a national trend among agencies seeking to bolster their long-term interactive strategies, Havas’ Arnold has named Jonathan Sackett chief digital officer, a new postition.

He reports to Pam Hamlin, president of Arnold’s headquarters office in Boston, who called Sackett’s arrival crucial because “digital is more than a capability. It is at the core of what we do for our clients.”

Sackett had been svp, director of digital operations at Interpublic Group’s DraftFCB in Chicago, where he guided online (and some offline) efforts for Kellogg’s and Procter & Gamble, among others. He is also the founder of NAIP, the National Association of Internet Professionals.

He described his mission as helping Arnold “maximize its potential across all digital platforms.” His oversight includes online and mobile marketing, Web site design and social networking.

The role of chief digital officer has grown increasingly important of late, with Ogilvy North America hiring Jean-Philippe Maheu and Goodby, Silverstein & Partners adding Mike Parker in such posts last month. Wieden + Kennedy last year tapped Renny Gleason as director of digital strategies.

These shops are seeking to stay competitive with their mainstream agency peers and interactive specialty firms (like Agency.com and Digitas) in the fast-changing media landscape defined by constant technological innovation.

Arnold, pitching with independent Nitro in London, recently added the $150 million global Volvo business. The agency also works for the American Legacy Foundation, Citizens Bank, Fidelity Investments, Hershey and Vonage, among others.