MRM Worldwide has laid off as many as 25 staffers in its New York office in response to client budget cuts.
The dismissals came in two rounds. The first happened within the last month and left 10 to 15 without jobs. The second came this week and affected another five to 10. The cuts are believed to have been across disciplines, doing away with positions in the agency's creative, account, and project management teams.
MRM New York has handled work for Nikon and MasterCard, among other clients. Meanwhile MRM Minneapolis recently picked up digital ad duties for Purina, and the agency has completed new campaigns for L'Oréal Men Expert in Europe and All laundry detergent in the United States.
An MRM spokesperson declined to comment on the layoffs.
Many digital agencies say advertisers are pressuring them to reduce fees associated with creating campaigns. That mandate has led to headcount reductions at numerous large interactive agencies. Razorfish has had multiple rounds of layoffs, including 40 in its New York office in late 2008 and another 70 in its L.A., Portland, San Francisco, and Seattle offices this year. GroupM, Efficient Frontier, and Organic Detroit have also dealt with job losses.
In its Digital Outlook report, Microsoft-owned Razorfish said budgets atrophied late in the third quarter, and grew only 7 percent from Q3 to Q4.
By all accounts, clients have continued to restrict spending into the second quarter. In addition to asking for fee reductions, clients of Razorfish and other agencies report clients have embraced short-range media planning, committing budgets only a month or a quarter out.An earlier version of this story incorrectly stated Agency.com Detroit has experienced layoffs. In fact the firm has no Detroit offices.
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Until March 2012, Zach Rodgers was managing editor of ClickZ's award-winning coverage of news and trends in digital marketing. He reported on the rise of web companies, data markets, ad technologies, and government Internet policy, among other subjects.
December 12, 2013
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