Marketing Gazette Deal Roundup, May 2020

This edition of MG's Deal Roundup features May's top client wins, company launches, expansions and agency awards.

Deal Roundup May 2020

Client wins


Baby products brand BabaBing has appointed brand and creative consultancy, Propaganda, as strategic partner.

Propaganda will support BabaBing in shaping a new brand strategy, which will support wider growth strategies.

BabaBing was established in 2005, by three brothers in a spare bedroom manufacturing changing bags for dads as well as mums. BabaBing is now stocked in national retailers including John Lewis, and prides themselves on designing and developing innovative, stylish and practical quality baby products for the everyday parent.

As part of the partnership, Propaganda will be supporting BabaBing in developing a brand strategy to position the business for sustainable growth, in an increasingly challenging business environment. Propaganda’s process will define a unique brand proposition that will shape the future of the brand in an increasingly noisy market.

Jamie Robinson, sales director at BabaBing, said: “The childcare product sector is developing at a tremendous pace. Right from the start our goal was to be a disrupter in the industry and create a leading range of innovative products at affordable prices. Now is the perfect time to be investing in our future and the development of our brand to keep us ahead of the curve. We believe that Propaganda, and their ability to challenge will support us in driving our brand to the next level.”

Julian Kynaston, founder of Propaganda, said: “We are proud to be working with BabaBing to create a brand that stands out from the crowd amidst an uncertain environment. We intend to fully harness the incredible ambition and backing of this client to disrupt the market and capitalise on the opportunity for growth. BabaBing are the first amongst three new business acquisitions we are set to announce, all wanting to emerge from covid-19 with a new strategy. There’s no doubt that this period of uncertainty is allowing brands to take a step back and think hard about whether or not they want to return to business as usual.”

Octopus Group

B2B tech marketing agency, Octopus Group, has been chosen to support Banking Circle for its technology PR brief, working alongside Banking Circle’s lead PR agency, Harrison Sadler.

Octopus Group will also coordinate its ION network of best-in-class independent agencies to provide European PR support, across the Nordics, Netherlands, Germany and France.

Banking Circle is one of the success stories of the booming financial infrastructure space. Founded in 2015 the company provides payments businesses and banks with access to essential lending, international payments to settlements and bank accounts, using APIs and cloud technology.

After significant success building brand awareness in fintech and financial media, Octopus Group will work to build Banking Circle’s technology story; showcasing the company’s technology and product innovation and leadership in the sector. The European network will simultaneously build awareness and interest in the brand as it grows its footprint and presence across the Netherlands, Nordics, Germany and France.

Miranda McLean, senior director, global head of marketing at Banking Circle, said: “We’re at a pivotal moment for Banking Circle as we drive innovation in financial infrastructure and payments whilst ramping-up our European growth ambitions. Given Octopus Group’s significant track record working with world-leading tech firms and its ION agency network, they were the ideal partner to help us achieve our objectives.”

The account will be led by Octopus Group’s client director, Toby Brown, account director Micky Izelaar and MD Pete Hendrick.

Brown said: “The financial infrastructure space is hugely exciting right now and Banking Circle is one of the major brands driving this category forward. Providing existing and new businesses with easy and rapid access to payments and lending services is a great catalyst for innovation and economic growth. We’re very excited to be supporting Banking Circle to tell this story and reach its growth ambitions.”

Hey Honey and CrocsHey Honey

Crocs Europe B.V., the global footwear brand, has appointed Hey Honey as its social creative AOR for Europe, following a competitive pitch.

Amsterdam and London-based Hey Honey will be responsible for social creative in Crocs’ key European markets, which include the UK, France and Germany.

Newly appointed marketing director of Crocs Europe B.V., Yann Le Bozec, said: “Hey Honey’s track record in creating culturally relevant content for EMEA markets is what stood out against other agencies. That and the agency’s deep understanding of Crocs’ target audience and their social behaviour, coupled with some innovative creative ideas will see our ‘Come as You Are’ campaign messaging come to life across Europe.”

Le Bozec highlights that “Hey Honey’s diverse workforce and understanding of culture in our most relevant markets was what sealed the deal.“

In its fourth year, the Come as You Are campaign has championed collaborations and ambassador relationships with some of the world’s most influential rappers, actors and figure-heads who all embody the mantra that everyone can be comfortable in their own shoes.

Chris Adams, CEO of Hey Honey, said: “Crocs’ CAYA campaign is the ultimate messaging to be conveyed on social media because people can be whoever they want to be. The US market has already seen enormous success with celebrities championing the brand as fans. We’re really excited to help Crocs bring this wave of organic endorsement over to Europe and prompt the success of that with a social-first approach.

“It’s a great win for Hey Honey, which was only founded at the beginning of 2018. Our mission is to help pan-European brands to grow using social media and content across multiple European markets at a time, efficiently and effectively. This win is proof that our team is one of the best in Europe to do this.”

Copper ConsultancyCopper Consultancy

Data innovation company CKDelta has appointed Copper Consultancy, specialists in communications and engagement for complex infrastructure and development, to lead its national communications activity.

Copper Consultancy will be tasked with delivering a high-impact national media relations strategy, while enhancing the data-specialists credentials among target stakeholders in sectors as varied as retail, utilities and mobility.

CKDelta, part of CK Hutchison Holdings, design and lab-test bespoke data models for businesses, using diverse anonymised data sets, to both understand what is happening now, and to predict what is coming.

The appointment of Copper Consultancy by the data-specialists contributes to the agency’s sustained growth in its client portfolio and comes in the wake of several new hires across its London, Birmingham and Bristol offices.

Commenting on the recent appointment, James Gore, account director at Copper Consultancy, said: “CKDelta are shaking up the data industry with their unique approach to modelling diverse and high-quality data sets. Having worked with a blend of clients in the utilities and telecommunications industries, our sector-leading approach to communications and engagement will ensure we deliver tailored messaging to key audiences.

“The appointment by CKDelta demonstrates Copper Consultancy’s resilience in these uncertain times and will enable us to continue pushing forward with our growth plans throughout 2020.”

Geoff McGrath, MD at CKDelta, said: “In recent years, technological developments and advancements have created an explosion in anonymous data. What has been sorely lacking is meaningful analysis of this rich data pool to provide actionable insights for businesses, the government and the media.

“We sought a communications agency that could assist us with telling our story to various audiences and proactively engage our customers to demonstrate what we can do to help them to solve real-world challenges. Together with Copper Consultancy, CKDelta will harness new and innovative ways to drive awareness of our brand and unique capabilities.

Rapport Digital

Rapport Digital is delighted to be working with global audience engagement software company, 3radical.

3radical is a developer and marketer of software used for customer engagement, employee engagement, digital marketing and gamification purposes. The company operates from the UK, Singapore and North America.

The software firm’s customers include Dell, DBS Bank, Standard Chartered Bank and Zizzi’s restaurant chain, with Zizzi using 3radical’s platform to create a gamified app, which uses location-based technologies to offer deals to consumers in close proximity to restaurants.

Rapport Digital will work with 3radical to manage its on-going SEO and PPC strategy, alongside content marketing activity.

Company launch

Mitchel White, founder, Reward

Mitchel White, founder, Reward.

Copy Generators

Manchester-based digital marketer Mitchel White has launched a copywriting consultancy offering brands a cost-effective way to reconnect with their audience as they emerge from lockdown.

The 27-year-old entrepreneur and founder of sustainable branding and marketing agency, Reward, chose to launch the sister firm Copy Generators due to the “potential that consumers’ changing digital behaviours unlocks for brands”.

Using the consultancy’s self-service platform, brands will be able to request unlimited professional copy written in a way that speaks directly to their audience, all for one affordable monthly fee.

Upon sign-up, users are assigned their own experienced copywriter who can respond to a variety of briefs such as engaging social media posts and thought leadership articles, right through to research papers and full website copy.

White believes that the cost-effective solution will “allow brands most affected by the pandemic recession, but still in a position to emerge, to reconnect with their current and prospective customers”.

He explained: “We launched during the COVID-19 pandemic because we believe there is an opportunity to push and help get the economy moving via professional and affordable communications.

“It was a difficult decision as we didn’t want to appear to be insensitive to the tragedy that COVID-19 has caused, but we also didn’t want the recession to be the reason why brands can’t effectively communicate with their audience and begin to rebuild.

“So much has changed during the pandemic with regards to consumers’ digital behaviours, and brands deserve a way to unlock the potential these changes offer, without having to jeopardise cashflow.

“As part of our launch, we’re dedicating a certain amount of time to conducting research that will help us understand the true extent to which the pandemic has affected those who are likely to benefit most from increased communications.

“We’ve launched an online survey to gather this research, giving all those who respond the opportunity to be entered into a prize draw to win three free months’ worth of unlimited copy via Copy Generators.”

The survey is aimed at e-commerce brands, agency owners, those in the retail sector, and travel agents, and will be open until midnight on June 7.

To take part and be in with a chance to win the prize, visit


Independent micro network The Beyond Collective is expanding its offering with the launch of standalone social media agency 87Social, joining sister creative agency Above+Beyond, media agency Yonder, production house Beyond Studio, and brand strategy & design agency, Frontier.

87Social will take on expanded briefs for existing clients within The Beyond Collective, including Subway UK & Ireland, Pilgrims Choice, Kerrygold and Beagle Street, as well as soon to be announced new clients.

With the belief that people’s conversations now control the destiny of brands, 87Social exists to help brands find their legitimate role and voice in culture, creating meaningful and effective ways to engage audiences through real conversation.

The agency will work with clients on brand and social strategy right through to content production, media buying and data analysis, creating brand conversations across all social platforms.

The current situation makes the launch of 87Social all the more pertinent; engagement with social media has rocketed by 61% and budgets switch away from other media.

Zaid Al-Zaidy, group CEO of The Beyond Collective, said: “The changing relationship between brands and their audiences is accelerating faster than ever, with more clients looking to social media to help ensure their brands stay relevant. There’s never been a more important time to ensure that a brand’s presence on social media is strategically grounded, creatively exciting and underpinned with the smartest media thinking. These are already the pillars upon which The Beyond Collective is built, and now is the right time for us to create a standalone social offering to ensure clients are achieving the impact they need.”



MainAd, a specialist in programmatic performance advertising, launches its US division to help brands reignite their strategies and engage in effective and efficient digital advertising.

The company remains focused on performance and conversion through its solutions to help brands accelerate sales through customer journey data and actionable intelligence.

Leading its new US division is Ben Segal, VP, Americas. Segal recently joined MainAd to oversee all US strategy and development. Previously, he served as VP of sales and programmatic partnerships at advertising technology pioneer Iponweb and held roles at DataXu and Salesforce.

He said: “This is an invigorating time to be leading MainAd’s U.S. division, especially during a period of such change and disruption.

“MainAd’s value proposition is firmly aligned with the challenge that marketers today face with decreasing budgets and increasing pressure to actual results. MainAd offers a more fitting approach to help brands address the current challenges in a privacy-forward manner.”

MainAd plans to hire ad operations, business analysts, sales and account managers by the end of 2020 to support the market expansion.

Taking place in a central London location on October 15, 2020, the Exhibition Marketer’s Masterclass will offer sessions designed to educate exhibition marketers in key strategies, technologies and tactics in how to bring audiences back to postponed events, entice new audiences and be a strategic part of building their event portfolios for the future.

The aim of the programme is to provide event marketing teams with fresh ideas and new approaches to the traditional event marketing models for attendee, exhibitor and sponsorship acquisition.

The event will be fully hosted for qualified exhibition teams with 10 additional spaces made available for individuals who have been made redundant due to COVID-19 crisis.

Katie Morhen, founder and director of the event’s organiser 52eight3, said: “There is a wealth of marketing training available but rarely one that specifically addresses the challenges facing exhibition marketing teams in both attendance acquisition and supporting commercial growth. Launching a dedicated training programme for exhibition marketers has been a dream of ours from the early days of our business.

“We feel that the immense challenge of bringing audiences back to exhibitions (in what we hope is the imminent future) means that now is the right time to press ‘reset’ on our attitudes to the marketing function within our events and organisations. It is also important for individuals working within these roles to be seen as a strategic business asset. Without attracting audiences to upcoming events, our industry just won’t survive. How we achieve that is our next mountain to conquer.”


We Are 778We Are 778

Branding agency We Are 778 is celebrating its success in The Drum Recommends Awards.

The Bournemouth-based business won the national award in the Print Design category, and the team were also finalists in five other categories, including client service.

This latest win is We Are 778’s third national Drum award in three years, having last year picked up Client Service award in The Drum Recommends Awards 2019 and the Creativity & Innovation award in The Drum Recommends Digital Awards 2019.

Simon Rodway, MD and Found of We Are 778, said: “To be recognised once again among the top marketing and design agencies is an enormous accolade and testament to the hard work and creative brilliance of the team.

“We are a small agency – but with the energy, ideas and experience to deliver in a big way for our clients. This award, and the recognition we received across so many categories, demonstrates just how much they appreciate and value what we do, making it all the more special. We’d like to say a big thank you to them all for their support.

“The close working relationships we develop with our clients mean they trust us to understand what they want and need, and then deliver it with flair and creativity, producing impactful designs which really connect with people. This award is recognition of our commitment to delivering real results and we’re so pleased and proud to receive it.”

UmbracoEnjoy Digital

Global content management system Umbraco has awarded Enjoy Digital with a Gold Partnership, declaring them one of the world’s top 40 web development agencies on the platform.

With more than 10 years’ experience of building effective websites, helping clients digitise processes, optimising content management systems and developing apps and tools, Enjoy Digital has been named an Umbraco Gold Partner.

Enjoy Digital’s technology director, Andy Hey, said: “Umbraco is known as the ‘friendly CMS’. It’s easy to use and has nurtured a huge open-source community which strives to build the best CMS possible. We use Umbraco because it’s flexible and makes content organisation and optimisation a doddle.

“Our Gold Partnership means that we build sites with Umbraco to the highest standards. It also means that we keep up to date with the latest Umbraco developments that will benefit our clients’ business.

“And our new status acknowledges the hard work we put in to build websites to the highest standard for our clients. We’re honoured to be part of a select group of agencies around the world that maintain these standards.”

Enjoy Digital uses Umbraco as the backbone to websites for many of its clients including Valspar, Ronseal, Optimum Medical, Leeds Arts University, Spirit of Harrogate, Synergy Automotive, as well as its own site.

Oliver Picton, head of technical at Enjoy Digital, said: “Our developers are really active within the Umbraco community, regularly hosting events for developers around Leeds. This is a fantastic recognition of the hard work and talent of our Production team.”

Umbraco is a content management system (CMS) which focuses on nurturing an open-source community in order to build the best CMS possible. The company has worked with household names such as Mercedes-Benz, the Carlsberg Group and Scholl, to create easy-to-manage dynamic platforms.

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