M&C Saatchi Sport & Entertainment has added a new unit to the company: Passion Pulse.
Neil Hopkins, the agency’s director-global head of strategy, will head the division, which is introducing the ad industry to a new term: fancom.
Laura Coller, managing director, said of the new unit and idea: “This demands a shift in how we look at audience needs. We believe there has been a demonstrable move away from the tropes of traditional fandom, towards what we call fancom. Away from mass homogenized groups following a single attitude and toward communities coalescing around intersectional interests and behaviors.”
Fancom is a tool comprising research, data, strategy, AI technology and human expertise.
M&C says fancom represents how modern audiences behave around their passions, a key understanding for brands. Agency research found that 63% of people use their passions as a way to engage with others. The real value for marketers isn’t just in connecting brands to consumers through passions. M&C believes it is helping brands connect consumers to each other through the things they love.
“Twenty years ago, we were the first agency to fuse the worlds of sport and entertainment. Then we were the first to adopt a positioning around passions,” said Coller. The goal is to help brands “grow their audiences concentrically, as well as to deepen their connections emotionally.”
Per the agency’s findings, the average person has at least four passions. Diving deeper into the data, 25% have at least seven. That’s the rationale for creating Passion Pulse.
Hopkins said: “Passion Pulse is our future-thinking strategic arm that will empower clients to rule with both their heads and their hearts. We’re no longer using the term ‘fandom,’ which implies mass homogenous groups following one attitude. We believe the future of passion marketing is ‘fancom,’ a proprietary term we’re adopting to represent coalescing fan communities and the opportunity for brands to be at the center of them.”
M&C’s client list includes adidas, Amstel, Absolut, Ballantine’s, Barclaycard, Barclays, Dreams, Heineken, Jameson, Kia, LEGO, Lynx, Malibu, Red Bull and Virgin Media O2.