The lateral move is said to be in response to pressure from GM North American marketing czar Ronald Zarrella to improve advertising. Reports of dissatisfaction have swirled in the Detroit ad community in the recent past.
Mr. Zarrella-who holds the title of group VP-North American sales, service and marketing-was unavailable to comment. Cadillac's Martin Walsh, general director of marketing services, denied there's been any pressure from GM corporate to change ad management or improve advertising.
LOOKING OUTSIDE GM
Cadillac is looking outside GM for Mr. Levin's replacement, said Mr. Walsh, to whom he reported. Mr. Walsh said it was hard to find someone within the organization with the skills needed to handle GM's new brand management directive.
Industry insiders say GM isn't likely to review Cadillac's $121 million account, now at D'Arcy Masius Benton & Bowles, Bloomfield Hills, Mich. Mr. Walsh said: "We're totally satisfied with the advertising" from DMB&B.
As director of strategic marketing planning, Mr. Levin succeeds Patrick Early, now marketing director of GM's new OnStar division. Mr. Levin will chart future product direction, coordinate global strategies and handle market research.