Procter & Gamble has realigned its media agency assignments, allotting more business to Dentsu Aegis Network’s Carat, which now reportedly has more than half of the CPG giant’s North America assignment.
The company spent more than $2.7 billion on measured media in the U.S. in 2017, according to Kantar Media. Full year 2018 figures are not yet available.
At the same time, the firm is also working on plans to provide individual brands with the option to take more planning and digital buying capabilities (including search and programmatic) in-house.
Meanwhile, Omnicom’s Hearts & Science and Publicis Media also continue to work on pieces of P&G's business.
A P&G spokesman would not comment on specific agency assignments, citing company policy. But the spokesman did confirm that in a bid to optimize its media investments, “we are now providing brands a little more flexibility to decide if they do their own planning, digital buying or put their hands on the keyboard for search and programmatic. This puts our brands closer to decisions to drive growth.”
Previously, the spokesman added, “we outsourced all our work from planning to buying through bill pay to an agency.”
And P&G’s media optimization efforts are ongoing. “We can confirm we are in partnership with our agencies as we explore a new media model for Fiscal Year 19-20 that ensures our brands are in best control of their levers for growth while maintaining the significant scale advantage Procter & Gamble currently sees.”
Those efforts flow both ways, according to sources -- meaning that the company could end up outsourcing some parts of the business as it in-houses others.
And the company’s effort to optimize media spending and agency fees has been the object of intense focus for several years now.
Company CEO David Taylor outlined some of the measures being taken and savings that were achieved last July. Over the last four years, he said, the firm has slashed $1 billion in agency fees and production costs.
Taylor said the company has achieved “the elimination of substantial waste in the media supply chain,” reducing media costs by 20%. Waste has been curbed in part, Taylor noted, by reducing the frequency of ads that the company had been hitting some customers with — 10 or 20 times a month versus the three times that would do the job just as efficiently.
Taylor also said the firm is focused on shifting dollars away from “wasteful mass marketing” to creating “one-to-one brand building enabled by data and technology.”
At the time Taylor also said that agencies can expect further budget reductions going forward as the firm brings more media buying capability in house.