BT consolidates advertising into Publicis Groupe, ending relationship with AMV

Telecoms brand handed main brand work to Publicis Groupe last year.

BT: long-running campaign by AMV traced a couple's relationship
BT: long-running campaign by AMV traced a couple's relationship

BT’s relationship with Abbott Mead Vickers BBDO has come to an end, 24 years after the Omnicom shop was first appointed as the brand's lead creative agency.

The telecoms giant has consolidated its demand generation work into the main advertising brief, which it handed to Publicis Groupe last summer. Saatchi & Saatchi and Digitas will both work on the account.

Saatchi & Saatchi created BT’s relaunch campaign and new positioning, “Beyond limits”, which launched in October. But AMV has continued to work on response campaigns. 

BT repositioned its brand after Philip Jansen became group chief executive in February 2019. Jansen is a former marketer who began his career at Procter & Gamble.

AMV was appointed to BT’s main advertising account in 1996 and successfully repitched for the business several times over the following two decades.

Saatchi & Saatchi already worked on EE, the other main brand owned by BT Group. 

A spokeswoman for BT said: “We have consolidated the BT demand generation work with the wider BT advertising brief, which will now be managed by Saatchi & Saatchi, part of Publicis Groupe. We would like to thank AMV BBDO for everything they have helped us achieve with the BT brand, and for being a valued partner to the business for many years.”

BT, which regularly features as a top 10 advertiser in the UK, consolidated its estimated £160m media-buying account with Essence in 2017.

Sister WPP shop Wunderman Thompson won all of the direct marketing and CRM business in the same year.

Magnus Djaba, UK chief executive of the creative practice for Publicis Groupe, said: “In today’s world, forward-thinking clients understand that communications need to play in different positions but still in harmony along the customer journey. We’re lucky that BT is one of those clients and that's why they chose the combined Saatchi & Saatchi and Digitas team."

A spokesman for AMV added: “We are proud of the contribution our creativity has made to both the BT brand and business, from the much loved ‘It’s good to talk’ campaign through to the successful launches of BT Sport and Mobile. We wish BT all the best.”