Publicis Groupe Accelerates Global Marcel Launch, Citing Need for Connectivity During Coronavirus Pandemic

By Erik Oster 

Recognizing the need to combat not only the virus but the associated isolation and the need to stay connected for both client and employee needs, Publicis Groupe is accelerating the global launch of its AI platform/connectivity network Marcel, beginning with the U.S. next week.

Publicis Groupe CEO Arthur Sadoun made the announcement in the latest of his weekly Sunday internal videos. In the address to Publicis Groupe employees, Sadoun acknowledged the holding company did not know how long social distancing measures (and the subsequent need to work remotely) would last.

He cited the increased engagement the platform has seen in the U.K.., where it rolled out Marcel as a test market eight weeks ago, since the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic. Publics Groupe plans to roll out the model that it has utilized in the U.K. worldwide by the end of April, with a few additional features.


These features include a daily feed of updates from Publicis Groupe covering information about the state of the industry and training modules, as well as updated information about COVID-19.

It also includes information about every job opening within Publicis Groupe, as, last week, the holding company announced it has put a hold on outside hiring and working with freelancers, relying exclusively on talent from within the organization. As such, anyone who needs help on a given client or assignment can post a “gig” with the new system to find a fit within Publicis Groupe and those seeking such new opportunities will be able to do so at a time when clients are responding in vastly different ways to the crisis.

Additionally, Publicis Groupe has initiated a series of partnerships for employee well-being, starting with wellness app Headspace in the U.S., effective immediately.

Sadoun also announced an upcoming Q&A session with 3,000 global leaders to discuss the needs of clients.

“In a world that is already changing very fast and won’t come back as it was, we need to act differently with them today and tomorrow, and I want to make sure we start immediately,” he said.