Campbell Mithun Forms Independent Design Unit

As an attempt to live up to the agency’s promise of “full-contact marketing,” Campbell Mithun has formed an independent design unit called Yello Communications.

Full-contact marketing “means we manage clients’ brands at every point where people have contact with them,” said deputy creative officer George Halvorson, who was behind the startup of Yello. “I thought there was something missing.”

Yello, whose name is a deliberate misspelling of the agency’s signature color, was born out of Halvorson’s experience working on the agency’s AirTouch account in 1999. In developing the telecom company’s brand platform, the agency was forced to work with outside design companies.

“They would work great for collateral, but when you tried to translate that to ads, it was tough to use,” Halvorson said. “When you have designers who understand how a design applies to advertising, it seems to work better.”

Yello joins media-services unit Cash Plus, Hispanic agency Cassanova Pendrill and package-design unit Pederson Gesk as an independent, wholly owned subsidiary of the Minneapolis agency.

The unit will work for both shared and independent clients. It is being maintained as a separate division to avoid becoming a “dumping ground” for work that art directors and writers don’t want to do, Halvorson said,

Yello will be run by David Weinstock, who was director of design at Wells BDDP in New York before joining CM in 2000.

Based in Minneapolis, Yello has been working with CM offices in Chicago and San Diego for clients such as Weber Grills. The unit may eventually open in the agency’s outlying offices, Halvorson said.