McAfee Hires Tribal DDB: The Tip of the Digital Agency Iceberg

September 18th, 2008

AdWeek announced today that security software maker McAfee has hired Tribal DDB as their agency of record. In addition to digital marketing, the assignment includes TV, print, and outdoor. 

Note that Tribal DDB is the excellent digital marketing sister of DDB. These guys know their stuff. I’ve met a few Tribal DDB folks via my work with ExactTarget. But historically, Tribal DDB has been a large but “regular” digital marketing shop. 

Warning. This is just the beginning

Tribal didn’t just beat out a bunch of other digital firms for this account. They were selected as AOR over big league integrated shops including Young & Rubicam and Dentsu. Wow.

As I’ve been saying (especially in my post “Agencies Wake Up – Digital Shops = Trojan Horse“) digital marketers have a much better handle on ROI, testing and optimization, and audience segmentation than do most of their traditional counterparts. Clients increasingly want to minimize ad risk and are willing to engage in several targeted tactics rather than one huge TV campaign.

If the traditional advertising agency community doesn’t see this win by Tribal DDB as a clear sign that the game is changing, I don’t know what will.

What is your agency doing to be able to compete with digital specialists?

How long will it be before digital agencies being agency of record becomes commonplace, rather than an exception? Leave a comment and let me know what you think. 


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