UM lands $300 million Quicken Loans media account

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Quicken Loans Technology Center
Quicken Loans Technology Center Credit: Quicken Loans

Mortgage lender Quicken Loans has selected IPG Mediabrands' UM to handle media following a lengthy competitive review dating back to January of this year. UM is in the process of opening a permanent office in downtown Detroit to serve Quicken Loans, which is headquartered there.

"We went through a very intentionally long process to make sure we found the perfect partner, not just from a collaboration and media buying and strategy standpoint, but also the right partner from a cultural standpoint," says Casey Hurbis, chief marketing officer at Quicken Loans. He notes that real estate was a key factor in the media agency decision, as Quicken Loans is focused on the development of its hometown.

Billionaire Dan Gilbert — founder and chairman of Quicken Loans, as well as founder and chairman of Rock Ventures — has poured billions into revitalizing Detroit and has been a driver in getting companies to invest in the city.

UM currently has a temporary office in Detroit and plans to open a larger space, which will be roughly 20,000 square feet in size and house around 150 staffers, in the First National Building in downtown Detroit. The office will supplement UM's existing office in Birmingham, Michigan, which serves clients including Fiat Chrysler Automobiles.

"We think that Detroit is such a vibrant community from a technology standpoint and creative standpoint," says Scott Russell, president, central region of UM, noting that the new space offers the opportunity to serve other client groups as well.

Quicken Loans has previously worked with ActiveMedia in New York and Eicoff in Chicago. The financial company produces work through its internal creative agency, which numbers around 240 employees, but also works with external creative agencies on a project basis.

Under the marketing helm of Hurbis, who joined Quicken Loans from Fiat in 2017, Quicken Loans returned to the Super Bowl earlier this year with a well-received spot starring comedian Keegan-Michael Key. In the campaign, which was designed to run throughout 2018, Key helps simplify the often complicated mortgage process. Quicken Loans worked with Brooklyn-based Huge on that push, but has worked with Pitch in the past. Hurbis declined to comment on Quicken Loan's Super Bowl plans for the coming year.

Last year, the brand spent $328.9 million on measured media in the U.S., according to Kantar Media.

In August, UM U.S. CEO Kasha Cacy announced she was departing to take a global CEO role at marketing solutions company Engine. The media agency plans to announce a replacement in the coming months. But advertising holding company IPG has been a force to be reckoned with this year, seeing strong results in the second quarter after its competitors Publicis Groupe and Omnicom Group showed weaker-than-expected quarters. In July, IPG announced a $2.3 billion deal to buy Acxiom's Marketing Solutions business, which it plans to be a standalone division aligned with IPG Mediabrands.

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CORRECTION: Quicken Loans is not owned by Rock Ventures. This information was misstated in an earlier version of this article.

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