Euro's Chicago Office Picks Up PlayStation CRM

Shop Says It Hopes Account Will Help Offset Sprint Loss

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On the heels of losing its biggest account, Sprint, last week, Euro RSCG Chicago has picked up U.S. CRM duties for Sony Computer Entertainment America's PlayStation. The Havas-owned shop hopes the new account will help soften the blow of revenue loss from Sprint.

Euro emerged as the winner after a review process that was launched several months ago and overseen by Santa Monica, Calif.-based consultancy Select Resources International. Interpublic Group of Cos.'-owned Deutsch , Los Angeles, will continue to be the lead creative agency on the business.

Omnicom's Direct Partners, a digital agency headquartered in Los Angeles, previously had the PlayStation CRM business prior to Euro.

Playstation declined to comment on the matter, but Norm Yustin, president at EuroRSCG Chicago had this to say in a statement: "PlayStation's engagement future lies in the gamification of marketing, encouraging consumers to play the brand as they would their favorite releases. In doing so, PlayStation learns more about its gamers and engages them with just the right message at the right time -- and, as their familiarity grows, gamers participate more deeply with the brand and experience greater rewards.

Euro Chicago's customer-relationship-marketing duties will include e-mail, digital, social and mobile campaigns. Euro's San Francisco office already has some of PlayStation's business. Overall, Sony Computer Entertainment appears to be investing less in marketing; it spent $65.9 million in domestic measured media in 2010, according to Kantar, down 11% from 2009.

Still, the agency is hopeful that the added revenue can help offset a massive loss that will hit the books early next year.

Sprint last week moved several of its accounts, including creative from Goodby, Silverstein & Partners and direct, digital and mobile marketing from Euro RSCG, to Digitas , which will serve as the lead agency, and its Publicis Groupe sibling Leo Burnett.

Mr. Yustin is confident that the agency's new-business wins this year -- PlayStation, agency of record duties for the Cracker Barrel, Reynolds and Hefty brands, Citibank's b-to-b business, Jim Beam's Pucker and Canadian Club creative, as well as the recently launched website for Disney's movie John Carter -- will help offset the Sprint loss.

He added that no layoffs are planned and that the Chicago office had no losses in 2011. The Havas agency's New York office earlier this year, though, lost creative for Kraft's Triscuit brand, as well as Heineken Light.

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