Beyond Interactive, the online advertising agency, launches a new Dialogue Management division this week, to offer brands direct online marketing strategies.
The agency, which has been preparing the division since October, intends to use digital tools such as e-mail and SMS text messages to help brands create a dialogue with their customers. It will offer the service to new as well as existing clients.
Grey Global acquired Beyond last year, before which the agency was an independent new-media specialist called media21. Since the acquisition, Beyond has been developing into a full-service online advertising agency, and Dialogue Management's launch is a significant step for the company as it builds up the services it offers clients.
Towards the end of last year, Beyond created some e-mail marketing for its client BOL. The managing director, Nick Suckley, said: 'We found it was going to be very complicated and fiddly, and quite difficult to administer. We didn't want to come to market with a crap offering - with something new you always hit problems, so we wanted to get it right first.'
The division will be headed by Tim Armstead, previously a planner and buyer at Beyond, and will initially have a staff of five. Armstead said: 'Dialogue Management is based on the principle that not everyone is looking to buy when visiting a website.'
Suckley said: 'We expect to sign up as many non-agency clients as current clients for this service. It will be a fairly huge area in the coming year.'
Suckley said Beyond is in talks with some of its other clients, which include Virgin Net and the 365 Corporation, about developing campaigns through the new division.