Verizon's other agencies include WPP's Ogilvy, which won the company's B2B account in December of last year, along with Interpublic Group of Cos.' McCann. Verizon late last year consolidated media under Publicis Groupe following its acquisition of Tracfone. All media planning and buying was organized under Publicis, including for Tracfone, which was previously handled by IPG's Mediahub.
Verizon spent a record $3.6 billion on advertising in 2022, “an increase in advertising expense of $454 million primarily due to the inclusion of TracFone results and brand marketing, including the launch of the 5G Ultra campaign in early 2022,” according to the company’s annual regulatory filing.
Verizon’s ad spending was far above the disclosed spending of rivals AT&T ($2.5 billion) and T-Mobile ($2.3 billion).
For the first quarter, Verizon reported a 1.9% dip in its consolidated operating revenue from the year-earlier period, which the company blamed on "lower equipment revenue and continued declines in business wireline services."
Verizon has been grappling with intense competition from its rivals. In one key operating metric, the company’s consumer segment reported a net loss of 263,000 wireless retail postpaid phones in the first quarter of 2023.
On an earnings call last month, Vestberg said: “We remain committed to our strategy not to compete on who can discount the most, but rather who can offer the most value to customers, the best overall experience and the best customer satisfaction.”
Scotti was also known for his focus on DEI. Last year, Verizon released the first-year results of its Responsible Marketing Action Plan, which Scotti led, which included the tracking and reporting of Verizon’s diversity and inclusion data within its various marketing teams and ad spend.
Verizon Chief Communications Officer Jim Gerace will now report to Vestberg and Rose Kirk, chief corporate social responsibility officer will transition into the human resources department, reporting to Sam Hammock, chief human resources manager at Verizon, according to the memo.
Before Scotti joined Verizon in late 2014, he spent three years as CMO of J. Crew. He also previously oversaw brands at Condé Nast and was head of global advertising and brand management at American Express.
Contributing: Bradley Johnson, E.J. Schultz