One of the agency world's longtime digital leaders is striking out on her own: Colleen DeCourcy is opening Socialistic, a social-media firm that is majority-owned by Havas Worldwide.
The agency, based in New York, hopes to bring together its own technologists with videographers, journalists and other content creators to help brands establish long-term, dynamic presences on social media. DeCourcy said the agency's approximately 20 employees will work with social platform APIs to create branded mobile, digital, in-store and Web collateral.
"There's a need for some sort of craft, to make something that uses the social media graph that is a little closer to our idea of what marketing or advertising is," said DeCourcy. "What's missing is a group of subject-matter experts with a journalistic background who can do real and valuable content for brands."
DeCourcy declined to name which journalists Socialistic would work with, but she did say the agency has struck a deal with online newspaper The Faster Times that will give clients access to its network of writers. She described the arrangement as a way for journalists to "have an outlet in a branded space" and for brands to have access to professional content creators.
Socialistic is DeCourcy's first venture since her June 2010 departure from the Omnicom Group's TBWA, where she was global chief digital officer since 2007. Prior to that she was chief experience officer at WPP Group's JWT. This will mark the first time DeCourcy has served as head of an agency.
Socialistic will operate both as a resource for other Havas agencies and as a client-facing shop. DeCourcy declined to name any clients the agency is currently working with.
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Douglas Quenqua is a journalist based in Brooklyn, NY who writes about culture and technology. His work has appeared in The New York Times, Wired, The New York Observer, and Fortune.
March 19, 2014