The move of its "brand-identity and consumer work" account to Publicis is the latest in a series of upheavals at the financial giant, which recently announced plans for more than 17,000 layoffs.
'Get it done'
Fallon has been Citi's agency of record for seven years, although the marketer redefined the relationship last year as "Publicis Powered by Fallon," and before long Publicis was working on the successor campaign to Fallon's long-running "Live Richly" effort, which makes its debut in May. The tagline for that campaign reportedly is: "Get it done."
In a press release announcing the move, Lisa Caputo, chief marketing and community relations officer for Citi's Global Consumer Group, said: "We have been impressed by Publicis' ability to customize and execute advertising programs across diverse geographies and cultures. Publicis will help propel our Citi brand identity messaging and deliver strategic advertising support for our outstanding array of financial products and services."
Significant loss for agency
Fallon retains some media chores on the account, as well as creative in some global markets, but the loss is a significant blow to the Minneapolis agency. Earlier this year, Fallon parted ways with longtime client United Airlines, and failed in a major effort to win Volvo's global creative account, which many auto-industry insiders saw as a good fit, considering the agency's widely praised work on BMW.
Those struggles come on the heels of a 5.3% revenue decline during 2006, according to Advertising Age's 2006 Agency Report.
A Fallon spokeswoman confirmed the account move and said the agency would look aggressively for another financial-services account. It handles Travelers Insurance, which has grown into a major advertiser in recent years.
Citi spent $226.5 million in measured media last year, down from $357 million during the year earlier, according to TNS Media Intelligence.