E*Trade Taps BBDO NY as Agency

E*Trade Financial has named BBDO New York, and its Atmosphere interactive arm, as agency of record for 2005. Overall media spending is expected to be $60 million this year.

The companies began working together during the fourth quarter of 2004, when BBDO put together an integrated marketing campaign for the financial services firm. BBDO NY beat out the Martin Agency for the AOR position. Both had emerged as leaders after E*Trade initiated an agency review last summer. Other participants in the review included Publicis New York and Martin/Williams, E*Trade’s incumbent agency.

A spokesperson for the company said it was looking for strategic vision and positioning, a marriage of creative and strategy, and passionate leadership as it conducted the review. The company also tested campaigns with consumers before making the decision.

The search began shortly after Nick Utton came aboard as E*Trade’s chief marketing officer, replacing Pam Kramer. Martin/Williams had been E*Trade’s agency for less than a year. Previously, E*Trade worked with Goodby Silverstein & Partners, which engineered the big Super Bowl ad campaigns the company undertook during the dot-com boom.

BBDO is expected to debut a campaign for E*Trade during the first quarter, but a company spokesperson wouldn’t reveal details. “We continue to look for a ‘home run’ campaign,” she said. “We believe that we have that in hand, and will be debuting that soon.”

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