It’s Just A Process Of Coordination

With clients ranging from Samsung to HSBC demanding integrated communications from their marketing agencies, coordinating the efforts has become a complicated process. Now, Mickey Marks, formerly president of Omnicom’s PHD in New York and San Francisco, believes he has found the solution: Interplay Communications.

The New York-based consultancy, which Marks launched last week, will offer management services to help clients, agencies and the media coordinate their multidisciplinary efforts. “We’re looking to empower brands,” said Marks. “The goal is to create a virtual holding company around a brand.”

Marks, who left PHD in 2003, said the new venture, which has yet to sign up its first client, will create “brand communications boards” made up of the leaders from each of an advertiser’s agencies. These groups will set strategic and marketing agendas across multiple channels, create sponsorship and packaging opportunities, and increase communications across channels such as creative, media, public relations, direct and the Net.

“There are very few clients whose business is all in one holding company,” said Marks. “We provide an opportunity for them to work together.”

Media buyers, however, cautioned that Interplay’s prospect pool would be limited by the rapidly developing ability of the largest advertisers to offer integrated-communications management on their own.

“This is a tough sell on the holding-company side, because so many top brands are highly integrated,” said one buyer. “But I see the use with respect to independents and brands that are using a number of different agencies’ services.”