CAMPAIGN DIRECT: PROFILE DANIEL MOREL - Flying the flag for the Sales Machine/Euro RSCG’s Daniel Morel is quick to battle for the honour of direct marketing. Ashley Davies reports

Direct marketing folk get a nice, warm feeling when hot shots from the world of above-the-line advertising join their ranks. Daniel Morel is one of those converts, and is the man carrying the flag proclaiming that all of Euro RSCG’s below-the-line operations are part of one giant and beautiful nation that is the Sales Machine.

Direct marketing folk get a nice, warm feeling when hot shots from

the world of above-the-line advertising join their ranks. Daniel Morel

is one of those converts, and is the man carrying the flag proclaiming

that all of Euro RSCG’s below-the-line operations are part of one giant

and beautiful nation that is the Sales Machine.



And boy, does he look down on people who look down on direct

marketing.



’This is the greatest snobbery,’ he says. ’Well-trained and talented

advertising people have the greatest respect for these sales techniques.

Only those who embrace the advertising profession more as lifestyle than

a business would look down on direct marketing. It’s more complex than

advertising, more accountable and is controlled by results.’



Carrying that Sales Machine banner means making sure every one of the

network’s 100 offices - covering everything from sales promotion, event

and database marketing to sales force motivation and crisis management -

feel they are singing from the same hymn sheet. It’s about sharing

resources and skills, having a common philosophy and, of course, growing

business.



But more of that later.



It all started just over three years ago in France, when four of Euro

RSCG’s below-the-line units got together for financial reasons. Soon

afterwards, Spain, the Netherlands and Portugal joined in. Now every one

of the network’s offices has been stamped with the Sales Machine brand.

(The UK is prevented from joining in on the name front because the Sales

Machine trademark already exists here.) Despite that omission, it’s

still 2,200 people speaking 24 languages in 70 agencies in 42 countries,

contributing 20 per cent of Euro RSCG’s gross income of dollars 252

million.



’It became the rallying flag for all these units,’ says Morel. ’The name

and philosophies were adopted by more units who were charged with

generating sales. The Sales Machine pulled all these units together and

gave them a common system, practices and philosophy.’



He says the network cannot be compared with WPP’s Specialist

Communications group, arguing - bizarrely perhaps, given that WPP owns

Hill & Knowlton, Ogilvy Public Relations and a stake in Chime

Communications - that what he has got is far more comprehensive on the

public relations and sales promotions fronts. It’s a lot more like

Wunderman Cato Johnson’s offering, he reckons, saying: ’The beauty of

what we do and they do is that we offer all these disciplines under one

roof.’



And this is where the potential for business growth comes in. The Sales

Machine has 2,000 clients worldwide and is in the process of talking the

largest ones - such as Intel and Phillips - through the range of

business services with which it does not currently provide them.



Another new area for growth is the dotcoms in the US. Morel says a new

breed of client is springing up, one that is in a hell of a rush to get

things moving. It wants everything from investor seduction to logo

design and sales deployment.



And there’s still cash in Morel’s expansion war chest. Expect news of a

few more acquisitions across the US in the coming weeks. Iain Ferguson,

the chief executive, marketing services, for Europe and Morel’s

lieutenant on this side of the pond, is quick to underline that being or

becoming part of this network really requires common values. ’There’s a

difference between collected agencies and connected agencies,’ he

enthuses.



So, as Morel travels back and forth spreading and implementing the Sales

Machine gospel, more shirts get left between Paris and New York. He

recently moved his home base from an island in South Carolina to upstate

New York, where he lives with his wife and two children.



It’s satisfying that he is now working with a French company, because he

spent many of his formative professional years as a Frenchman working

for American companies. After a stint in the French Navy, where he

picked up a passion for sailing, and pocketing an MBA from Tulane

University in New Orleans, he joined Ogilvy & Mather in the US to work

on General Foods.



Steady promotion and various agency jobs took him to the late 80s, when

he set up his own company, FC Inc, helping clients set up on their own

with direct marketing services. After selling to Yves Rocher, he went

below the line big time as the worldwide director for Blau Marketing

Technologies (now rebranded as Brann Worldwide after its acquisition by

Dan Snyder), where he spent long enough close to IBM to fall completely

in love with new technology.



Describing himself as half way between an advertising person and a

technologist, he clearly adores high-tech stuff as much as Wordsworth

loved nature.



In fact, listening to Morel discussing his own love of nature is like

listening to the soundtrack of a too-perfect romantic film and then

hearing the comical rip of reality as the needle is pulled violently

from the vinyl. He says: ’When you get older you become more of a nature

freak - a tree becomes more important and a rock is beautiful. But

nature can only entertain you for so long and that’s why I’ve got a

digital compass attached to a Palm Pilot. It lets me download maps from

the internet and shows me directions.’



Ask Ferguson how much of a technology trainspotter Morel is, and he

replies: ’If he is an anorak, it’s a very stylish French one. Let’s just

say he’s an early adopter.’



THE MOREL FILE

1977

Ogilvy & Mather, assistant account executive on General Foods

1982

Compton Advertising, account supervisor on Procter & Gamble

1984

Saatchi & Saatchi (which bought Compton), management

supervisor/associate director on P&G and later on Avis, British Airways,

IBM and Gauloises

1987

FC Inc, chief executive

1995

Blau Marketing Technologies, senior vice-president, worldwide director

1998

The Sales Machine, chief executive



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