Starcom Motive unveils direct arm

Starcom Motive, the six-week-old merged agency, has announced its first major venture - a direct-media department.

Starcom Motive, the six-week-old merged agency, has announced its

first major venture - a direct-media department.



The 140-strong company has poached Diana Rhodes, MediaCom Direct’s

managing director, to run the division.



When Rhodes arrives in a month’s time, she will recruit a team dedicated

to offering clients a range of direct response media services from DRTV

to press advertisements and inserts.



NatWest, Swinton Group and mortgage broker John Charcol are the biggest

spenders on direct media on Starcom Motive’s client list.



However, the agency’s chief executive Mark Cranmer said: ’There will be

no wholesale movement of clients into the new direct division, they will

stay within their core teams. This division will offer new services to

existing clients, should they want them, and attract new business.’



He added: ’Direct response media is continuing to grow. We’re pleased to

have hired Diana, who is a big name in the business.’



Rhodes is responsible for increasing MediaCom Direct’s billings by 45

per cent over the past year. Her clients include Axa Sun Life Direct,

James Meade, MBI and Amnesty International.



Before joining MediaCom, Rhodes was media director at WWAV Rapp Collins

Media - the media offshoot of creative direct-response specialist WWAV

Rapp Collins -which she formed with managing director Mike Colling.



Rhodes, a New Yorker, said it was too early to say who would replace her

at MediaCom Direct.



The ten-strong agency sits alongside sister company MediaCom TMB Direct,

which is run by David Kyffin with Clive Howse as his second in

command.



MediaCom decided to keep the two operations separate when it merged with

The Media Business because of potential client conflicts.



However, now it is dropping the TMB from its title, MediaCom TMB Direct

must change its name in order to differentiate itself from MediaCom

Direct.



Despite the hype surrounding new media, traditional direct-response

media is one of the fastest growing areas of the ad industry.



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