Universal Parks & Resorts Names GSD&M as Agency of Record

By Erik Oster 

Universal Parks & Resorts has selected Austin-based agency GSD&M as its agency of record, following a review.

GSD&M will handle brand strategy and creative for Universal Parks & Resorts’ brand nationally, while individual parks will continue to work with a variety of agency partners.

Universal Parks & Resorts spent nearly $124 million on measured media last year and a little over $124 million in 2017, according to Kantar Media.


“In searching for a partner, we wanted one that would strategically and creatively be able to represent our distinct brand with an equally distinct voice,” Universal Parks & Resorts CMO Alice Norsworthy said in a statement. “Throughout our engagements with GSD&M, we knew they understood our DNA and could authentically help us bring our brand to life. They too have a love for fun that we were compatible with from the start.”

GSD&M has worked with TM Advertising and David&Goliath in the past. It’s unclear what agencies participated in the review, but GSD&M was enthusiastic about partnering with the brand.

“From day one, we cut no corners in the process of fully immersing ourselves in Universal’s business. We sat in the front row, screaming our lungs out on every roller coaster ride. We ate gigantic cartoon donuts and drank magical buttered brews for breakfast, lunch and dinner, and found out just how much fun we could have. Turns out, there is no limit,” GSD&M president Marianne Malina said in a statement. “Universal and GSD&M both know that, and it’s that passionate, fun-loving spirit that created an instant chemistry. It’s one of those rare opportunities when you know it’s going to be a ride of a lifetime!”

Universal Parks & Resorts more prominent advertising in recent years includes a 30-second “Vacation Quarterback” spot starring Peyton Manning in the 2018 Super Bowl, which was created in-house.

GSD&M’s first work for Universal Parks & Resorts is expected within the next year.

The appointment comes less than a year after Pizza Hut named GSD&M as its agency of record, on the heels of agency winning Jack Link’s and retaining the U.S. Air Force account.