School Reports 2012: Mindshare

A couple of years ago, Mindshare began ditching its reputation as a safe haven for unadventurous multinational accounts. Mark Creighton, who joined in October 2010 as the chief operating officer, arrived with the agency on something of a roll, with new business and awards flowing in. Creighton's faith in integration was, we were told, likely to take the agency to another level - and, indeed, it bore fruit last year in a new planning product called Open Source Planning.

Recent Lynx work
Recent Lynx work

Score: 6

Agency factfile: Mindshare
Type of agency Media planning and buying
Company ownership WPP
Key personnel Jed Glanvill chief executive
  Mark Creighton chief operating officer
  Ita Murphy managing director
  Paul Rowlinson head of exchange
  David Walsh head of business planning
Nielsen billings 2011 £720m
Nielsen billings 2010 £677m
Declared income £704m (2010)
Total accounts at year end 68
Accounts won 13 (biggest: Alberto Culver)
Accounts lost 3 (biggest: Tourism Ireland)
TV 41%
Press 20%
Outdoor 7%
Radio 4%
Search 7%
Cinema 1%
Digital, display and social 16%
Sponsorship 4%
Number of staff 370 (+1%)

So there was hope that the agency's renaissance would continue apace - as reflected in its move into chic new offices in the Central Saint Giles complex. The start of 2012, which saw Nick Emery take the role of worldwide chief, could accelerate this new direction.

However at the end of the year, Mindshare's biggest client Unilever - for which Mindshare has created an augmented reality campaign for Lynx - decided to put its media account up for pitch. And UK new business last year was patchy.

The agency's biggest win - Alberto Culver - came as a result of Unilever's acquisition of the company.

So while the agency didn't have a terrible year, it seems to have lost a spark of energy that was kindled in 2010. The Uk shop needs to work hard to break the perception that it is just an unspecial cog in a global corporate machine.

Score last year: 7

How Mindshare rates itself: 7

"Mindshare had a year to be proud of in 2011. Strong client retention, £45 million of new billings, two Lions at Cannes, an IPA Effectiveness Award and fantastic new talent all stand testament to a great 12 months. Our new award-winning offices allowed us to develop a new way of working with partners across the industry, which we call Open Source Planning. OSP was brought to life in spectacular fashion at Huddle, our industry-first technology event."

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