To say that 2001 was a challenging year for ad agencies is an understatement. With total ad spending down 9.8% from 2000, according to CMR, it was the worst year-to-year decline in more than a decade.
The weak economy was only exacerbated by the events of Sept. 11, which initially caused marketers to pull ad budgets and halt business travel.
Yet through it all, many b-to-b ad agencies picked up new accounts, continued to create outstanding work for clients, improved operating efficiencies and in some cases even grew their revenue from 2000.
``We kept our focus on the results,'' said Carla Hendra, president of OgilvyOne North America, the direct and interactive agency within Ogilvy, which BtoB named best agency in the large agency category.
That sums up very well what agencies had to do to succeed in a tough year-make results happen. More pressure than ever was put on return on investment as marketers justified every dollar spent.
Smart agencies responded by streamlining operations to help clients market more efficiently.
McClain Finlon, which won best midsize agency, put new processes in place that helped cash-strapped clients such as Qwest Dex slash the production time on sales collateral. This kind of sound strategy helped the agency grow its total revenue by 19.8% over 2000.
There are many examples of how leading agencies excelled in an otherwise down year. The following pages feature profiles of winning agencies, as well as a list of the Top 25 b-to-b agencies of 2001.
Key exec: David Williams, president, director of media services
2001 revenues: $2.2 million
2001 b-to-b revenues: $1 million
Key clients: UPS, Bell South, National Car Rental
2001 campaigns: BellSouth (Small Business Phone Service and Small Business ADSL); UPS (e-Logistics-Customer Lead CD-ROM; Sales CD-ROM)
Comments: Ranked a Top 50 Interactive Advertising Agency by Media magazine; ranked eighth fastest-growing company in Atlanta by the Atlanta Business Chronicle.
New York www.agency.com
Key exec: Chan Suh, CEO
2001 revenues: Estimated more than $100 million
2001 b-to-b revenues: n/a
Key clients: Compaq Computer, Boyds Collectibles, 3M, Liberty International
2001 campaigns: Compaq.com redesign; British Airways (touch-screen campaign, "Fly Flat, Fly Free"), Boyds Collect-ibles b-to-b site
Comments: Silver winner at British Design & Art Direction Awards; One Show Interactive, Merit Award; Crystal Award of Excellence, Communicator Awards; Astrid Award.
HONORABLE MENTION: Midsize
Bader Rutter & Associates
Key exec: Greg Nickerson, president
2001 revenues: $15.2 million
2001 b-to-b revenues: $15.2 million
Key clients: Boise Cascade Office Products, Dow AgroSciences, Caterpillar, Merial, Rite-Hite, IMC Global, Loctite
2001 campaigns: Boise Cascade Office Products (“It Couldn’t be Easier”), Sentricon Termite Colony Elimination System (Dow AgroSciences); Caterpillar (Uninterruptible Power Supply system)
Comments: Six national BMA Pro-Comm awards; nine Milwaukee area BMA awards.
Key exec: Steve Badertscher, president
2001 revenues: $1.2 million
2001 b-to-b revenues: $1.2 million
Key clients: Todco, Nippert, The Logan Clay Products, Marion Steel, Danser, Tectum
2001 campaigns: Danser, The Logal Clay Products, E-Crane International, Todco
Comments: 35 Central Ohio chapter BMA BizComm Awards, including Best of Show. Silver award in AXIEM (Absolute eXcel-lence in Electronic Media).
Key exec: Mark Gause, CEO
2001 revenues: $5.4 million
2001 b-to-b revenues: $5.2 million
Key clients: Agilent Tech-nologies, Maple Leaf Farms, Libbey Glass, Indiana-polis Business Journal, American Lawn Mower, Brewer Science 2001 camp aigns: Agilent Technologies (integrated brand campaign for life science business unit); Brewer Science (brand research and development)
Comments: BMA Pro-Comm Award, Biochemical Marketing Association Dx award, local ADDY and Telly awards for Libbey.
Key exec: Edward Brozena, CEO
2001 revenues: $4.9 million
2001 b-to-b revenues: $4.9 million
Key clients: Johns Manville, Gates Rubber, Krone, Graphic Packaging, Agilent Technologies
2001 campaigns: Gates (sports marketing program, "Let's Rocket" direct mail); Johns Manville (roofing systems branding campaign), Krone (TrueNet campaign)
Comments: BMA Pro-Comm Award of Excellence, BMA Silver Key and BMA Gold Key (Colorado chapter), two PRSA Gold Pick Awards (Colorado chapter), grew revenues 18%.
HONORABLE MENTION: Interactive
Key exec: Sarah Fay, president
Employees: 100 (U.S.)
2001 revenues: $34 million
2001 b-to-b revenues: $17 million
Key clients: Seagate Technology, Adobe Systems, Palm, Bank of America, Rational Software, Dun and Bradstreet
2001 campaigns: Palm (i705 Launch); Adobe (Photoshop Elements); Bank of America Online (Banking/Bill pay); RadioShack (Radioshack.com).
Comments: In 2001, Carat Interactive acquired Lot21 Interactive and Vizium, adding digital media services, eCRM and emerging technologies to its media services practices. 2001 Interactive Agency of the Year, BtoB (Lot21); 2001 Media Agency of the Year, Advertising Age; 2001 Interactive Agency of the Year, Myers Forum; BtoB named Mark Stephens, VP-media director, among its Best and the Brightest in 2001.
Key exec: James Stadler, senior VP-group director, B2B Practice
2001 revenues: N/A. Estimated billings: $1.6 billion
2001 b-to-b revenues: Estimated $10 million. Estimated billings, $70 million.
Key clients: Dell Computer Corp., Emerson Electric, USG
2001 campaigns: Dell Enterprise; USG ("Working for You" and Rock Tour Promotion).
Comments: Reggie Award for USG Rock Tour. Grew business by 30% in 2001.
Doremus & Co.Profile
Key exec: Carl Anderson, CEO
2001 revenues: $43.5 million
2001 b-to-b revenues: $43.5 million
Key clients: Bank of America, Commerce One, Corning, Hitachi Data Systems, Morgan Stanley Dean Witter
2001 campaigns: ITT Industries (“Lake”), Ace Group (“It Could”), Hitachi (“What’s Next?”), Foundry Networks (“Viva Global Ethernet”), ABN AMRO Asset Management, Morgan Stanley (“Great Performers”)
Comments: Won Addy award, added new business for Bank of America and TRW, and expanded relationships with several clients, including Morgan Stanley, Corning, Hitachi and Foundry Networks.
Euro RSCG Worldwide
Key exec: Bob Schmetterer, CEO
2001 revenues: N/A
2001 b-to-b revenues: N/A
Key clients: Airbus, Air France, Carrier, Credit Suisse Group, Intel, International Paper
2001 campaigns: Intel ("Macroprocessing"), Network Solutions, Airbus
Comments: Astrid Awards for Network Solutions; M&M award for Airbus; Addy awards for Intel and InFocus; several Astrid, Benny and PRO awards for Nextel. Won new b-to-b accounts Juniper Networks and Airbus in 2001.
Foote, Cone & Belding Worldwide Profile
Key exec: Brendan Ryan, CEO
2001 revenues: $464 million (U.S.; excludes healthcare)
2001 b-to-b revenues: $85 million
Key clients: Baxter Bioscience, Hewlett-Packard Co., Boeing Co., John Deere, Archer Daniels Midland, Blue Cross & Blue Shield Association, Compaq Computer Corp., U.S. Postal Service, Metropolitan Life Insurance Co., J.P. Morgan Chase & Co.
2001 campaigns: MetLife (“MetLife is Easier”), Compaq (“Inspiration Technology”), USPS (“Solutions for Small Business”), J.P. Morgan Chase (“3607 Relationship”).
Comments: BtoB Sawyer Award, runner-up for “MetLife is Easier” campaign; London International Advertising Awards, Compaq campaign. B-to-b revenue increased 29.8%.
HONORABLE MENTION: Large
Hill, Holliday, Connors, Cosmopulos
Key exec: Jack Connors, CEO
2001 revenues: $125 million
2001 b-to-b revenues: Estimated at $50 million
Key clients: FleetBoston Financial Corp., PricewaterhouseCoopers L.L.P., Veritas Software, Sybase Inc., Broadwing Inc., John Hancock Insurance.
2001 campaigns: Cisco (“Internet Generation”), Broadwing (“The World’s First Beautiful Network”), John Hancock (“Insurance for the Unexpected. Investments for the Opportunities”), Fleet Bank (“Forward. Thinking.”)
Comments: Gold Effie for Cisco campaign, Bronze Lion for Business Leaders campaign, as well as numerous awards from One Show, Communication Arts, Clio and Andys. Added three new clients in Bay Area and expanded business for Verizon Wireless in mid-Atlantic.
HSR Business to Business Cincinnati Profile
Key exec: Rick Segal, CEO
2001 revenues: $10 million
2001 b-to-b revenues: $10 million
Key clients: AK Steel, Hobart, Cincinnati Bell, GE Aircraft Engines, Convergys, Pall
2001 campaigns: GE Aircraft Engines (Military Campaign), AK Steel (launch of AgION), continuation of Hobart brand campaign Comments: Seven Addy Awards and four citations of excellence at regional American Advertising Federation competition; third straight Best in Show award at the BMA Pro-Comm Awards for GE Aircraft work. 2001 PRSA Silver Anvil Award for Makino work. Record revenue in 2001.
Key exec: James Heekin, CEO
Employees: 1,915 (U.S.)
2001 revenues: estimated $1.04 billion
2001 b-to-b revenues: Estimated $66 million
Key clients: Microsoft, Agilent Technologies, Lucent Technologies, DuPont; Texas Instruments, Delphi Automotive Systems, GM Corporate, Hitachi; American Airlines, Northrup Grumman, Sprint.
2001 campaigns: Microsoft ("Agility," Windows XP)
Comments:BtoB Sawyer Award for Best Print Ad, Windows XP.
McClain Finlon Advertising> Profile
Key exec: Cathey Finlon, CEO
2001 revenues: $32.1 million
2001 b-to-b revenues: $8.8 million
Key clients: Sun Microsystems, Johns Manville, Qwest Dex, Xcel Energy
2001 campaigns: Johns Manville Formaldehyde-free Insulation (“Smart Ideas, Better Insulation”), Johns Manville EZ Fit Insulation (“No Cutting Necessary”), Xcel Safety Campaign (“Stay Away, Stay Alive”), Xcel Conservation Improvement Program
Comments: Two citations of excellence from the American Advertising Federation; two Addy awards; four silver keys from the BMA Golden Key Awards, recognized by the Denver Business Journal as one of the 25 fastest-growing companies and third-largest woman-owned business in Colorado. Total revenues grew 19.8%.
Mobium Creative Group Chicago
Key execs: Guy Gangi and Gordon Hochhalter, partners
2001 revenues: Estimated $6.1 million
2001 b-to-b revenues: Estimated $6.1 million
Key clients: NEC-Mitsubishi, Motorola GTSS, Tellabs, CNH Global, Ondeo Nalco, Mead Westvaco
2001 campaigns: Motorola GTSS; NEC-Mitsubishi CRT and LCD; Equity Office.
Comments: Won three national BMA Pro-Comm Awards, recognized as a top b-to-b agency by BMA, 30 Tower Awards (Chicago Chapter of the BMA), 14 ACE Awards (New York Chapter of the BMA).
NKH&W > Profile
Kansas City, Mo.
Key exec: Pete Kovac, CEO
2001 revenues: $8.9 million
2001 b-to-b revenues: $5.5 million
Key clients: American Angus Assocation, Boehringer Ingelheim Vetmedica, F&M Bank, Hilti North America, Micro Motion, Sprint Prepaid Marketing
2001 campaigns: American Angus Association, Sprint (Prepaid Marketing), Boehringer Ingelheim Vetmedica (Torpex)
Comments: Creative awards from National Agri-Marketing Association, and honors by the BMA, PRSA, DMA, AAF and NAMA. Won new clients including Wellmark Blue Cross & Blue Shield, Sprint Prepaid Marketing and Sprint Partnership Marketing Group. Grew business by 7% over 2000 and opened two new offices.
Ogilvy (includes Ogilvy & Mather and OgilvyOne) Profile
Key exec: Shelly Lazarus, CEO
2001 revenues: Not disclosed (billings of $5.8 billion, worldwide)
2001 b-to-b revenues: Estimated at $105 million, U.S. (billings of $937 million, U.S.)
Key clients: AIG, American Express Co., AT&T Wireless, IBM Corp., Kodak Co., Motorola Inc., Pitney Bowes Inc.
2001 campaigns: AIG (“The greatest risk is not taking one”), IBM (“e-Business,” “e-Infrastructure,” “developerWorks”), AT&T Wireless (“mLife”), American Express (“Blue for Business,” “Open Small Business Network”)
Comments: U.S. Agency of the Year, Advertising Age (2002); North American Agency of the Year, Adweek; Best Integrated Interactive Agency of the Year, AdWeek; PR Agency of the Year, PRWeek; 2001 Agency of the Year, Media, Also won numerous Caples, Addy, Effie, Clio and other awards.
One to One Interactive > Profile
Key exec: Steve Humphrey, CEO
2001 revenues: $9.7 million
2001 b-to-b revenues: $9.7 million
Key clients: Nextel Communications Inc., Motorola Inc., Unisys Corp., State Street Corp.
2001 campaigns: Motorola, Unisys, Nextel (online direct response media)
Comments: Expanded business with State Street, Motorola and Unisys; named agency of record for Nextel; increased number of employees to 55 from 34. Total revenue grew 71%.
Key exec: Mark Kingdon, CEO
2001 revenues: $54 million
2001 b-to-b revenues: $5.5 million
Key clients: FNMA, Dow Automotive, TRW
2001 campaigns: Thistle Hotels, British Telecom, TRW, Bell Canada, Mondus, TD Securities, Mutual of New York
Comments: Won British Interactive Media Award for Thistle Hotels campaign, site of the week from PC Pro Magazine for British Telecom "No More Nonsense" campaign.
Key execs: Ryan Rieches and Ray Baird, principals
2001 revenues: $4.8 million
2001 b-to-b revenues: $4.8 million
Key clients: Bosch Home Appliances, Pacific Life & Annuity, Parker Hannifin, Toyota Industrial, Epicor Software.
2001 campaigns: Pacific Life & Annuity (brand and tactical rollout strategies), Bosch (new product launch), Epicor (corporate branding strategies)
Comments: Runner-up in Irvine Chamber of Commerce's Business of the Year, two print regional design awards, six Summit awards.
SF Interactive > Profile
Key exec: Bruce Carlisle, CEO
2001 revenues: $6.4 million
2001 b-to-b revenues: $5.5 million
Key clients: Cisco Systems, VeriSign, Adaptec, Quantum
2001 campaigns: Quantum (DLT Tape), Cisco (“Technical Decision Maker,” “Business Decision Maker”)
Comments: B-to-b revenue grew from 28% of total revenue to 85% of total revenue.
Key exec: Alan Siegel, CEO
2001 revenues: $38 million
2001 b-to-b revenues: $29 million
Key clients: Dow Chemical, Boise Cascade, Lockheed Martin, American Express, Caterpillar
2001 campaigns: Mirant, Technicolor Digital Cinema, Collegeboard.com
Comments: 45% of business includes interactive.
HONORABLE MENTION: Small
Key exec: Gary Slack, managing partner
2001 revenues: $5.8 million
2001 b-to-b revenues: $5.8 million
Key clients: Electronic Federal Tax Payment System, Zebra Technologies, FTD, Johnson Wax Professional, ACNielsen, Tetra Pak, International Dairy Foods Association
2001 campaigns: EFTPS (integrated program); Anexsys (“The Right Decision” print advertising, public relations, collateral); Prime Advantage (“Make your best deal. Better” print campaign and direct mail). ACNielsen (new service/product introduction)
Comments: Won seven Pro-Comm Awards, 30 Tower Awards, added nine new clients, merged with USA Chicago, had 12 % revenue growth.
Santa Monica, Calif.
Key exec: Bart Young, CEO
2001 revenues: Estimated $3.9 million
2001 b-to-b revenues: Estimated $3.9 million
Key clients: Aramark, Candle, Fluor, Raytheon, TDK Semiconductor, TRW Velocium
2001 campaigns: TDK Semiconductor ("Connectivity"), Agribuys ("Break Through"), Velocium ("Proven Here"), Heidelberg Engineering ("Seeing is Believing")
Comments: BMA Pro-Comm, Best of Division, total communications program for TDK.