Read Publicis' Memo to Employees About Chevy's Shift to Goodby

Susan Gianinno Writes to Staff: 'See the USA ... in Anything but a Chevrolet!'

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Susan Gianinno
Susan Gianinno
NEW YORK ( -- Yesterday, after more than 48 hours of speculation as to what General Motors planned to do with Chevrolet's brand advertising, incumbent Publicis was dealt the news. All creative work for Chevy -- which GM consolidated at Publicis less than a month ago -- would be shifted to Omnicom Group's Goodby Silverstein & Partners, the agency new marketing head Joel Ewanick worked with during his tenure at Hyundai.

Here's a memo, obtained by Ad Age, that Susan Gianinno, chairman-CEO of Publicis USA, sent to employees about the move.

From: Susan Gianinno
To: [Staff]
Date: 05/20/2010 05:37 PM
Subject: "See the USA... in anything but a Chevrolet!"


How could this happen?

After earning and winning all the Chevy business less than a month ago, the new CMO has decided to overturn this decision and go with another agency option. He did this without having met the agency or being briefed on the plan and the work we had done and were doing.

How could this happen?

Decisions are made for all sorts of complex and, often, for convoluted reasons.

One thing I know for sure is that Chevy has lost something in this decision. I am not saying they will fail; or that the agencies they will work with are bad. I am saying that they were disrespectful in this decision. It was made without a thoughtful review of what we were doing or had planned. It was made without meeting any of us. That just isn't right. But things are not always right and fair.

We have a missed opportunity here, which we will have to address. However, we don't have a loss... the loss is theirs... not ours.

We did some great work; we solved their divisional strategy problem; we gave them a path forward; we opened their minds to some great opportunities, including digital; we showed them what great strategic thinking could do for them...

We introduced them to amazing people.

This is their loss.

Thanks everyone.

Now let's get us a great car account.


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