Universal McCann Launches Rally for Social Media

One of the world's largest media agencies is investing in social media marketing in a big way with Universal McCann's launch of Rally, a new social media division at the disposal of all UM's clients. Called Rally@UM in a nod to modern parlance, the social media division is headed up by Heidi Browning, a former MySpace executive, and is intended to help clients integrate social media into their long-term marketing and communications strategies, in part by helping them tackle communications planning and creative optimization.

In announcing the new launch, UM said Rally was created "to alleviate some of the confusion that exists about what social media means and how it can best be used," adding that Rally will demonstrate the viability and importance of social media with easily understood metrics for ROI.

Rally@UM's disciplines include "Listening, Insights & Measurement," consisting of social media monitoring, earned media reporting, and conversation mining; "Strategy & Ideation," covering content and communications planning, among other strategic services; "Community Activation and Consumer Relationship Management" (CRM), for community development and management for social media strategies; and Social Organizational Consulting, helping clients develop organizational models, processes, and best practices. With headquarters in New York, UM maintains offices in 130 countries, and employs about 3,600 people.

This news comes not long after Publicis Group's Vivaki digital group announced its intention to launch a social media consulting practice by the end of 2010. Meanwhile, social media ad spending is poised to boom, according to a number of independent forecasts. One recent report from Borrell, "The Social Networking Explosion: Ad Revenue Outlook" has social network ad spending increasing 68% from $4 billion in 2009 to $7.5 billion in 2010, then continuing to grow every year to about $38 billion in 2015.

4 comments about "Universal McCann Launches Rally for Social Media".
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  1. Christie Adams from SaleSpider.com, July 21, 2010 at 9:18 a.m.

    The above post shows exactly why agencies like Rally@UM have launched. Not only is social media ROI important-so is client community management.

  2. Steven Arsenault from OneBigBroadcast.com, July 21, 2010 at 12:30 p.m.

    Social Media distribution or Digital Broadcasting is a new frontier and Rally@UM is heading the pack with this offering.

  3. Erik Rabasca from Rally@UM, July 21, 2010 at 1:42 p.m.

    Thanks for the coverage Erik! We’re pretty excited about our launch and are getting some great feedback already. @Steven, appreciate the vote of confidence! @Christie, couldn’t agree with you more. Paid can drive traffic and initial engagement, while community management builds sustainable dialogue that brands can benefit from in the long term.

  4. Barry Berkowitz from Yesmail, July 23, 2010 at 2:33 p.m.

    Bravo & best wishes to my former IPG colleagues at Rally@UM. It's critical to be in this game.

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