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Marketing services agencies in this report are agencies with direct marketing and/or sales promotion.

All agencies are ranked by their 1998 revenue from such marketing services. There are 48 shops with both services, 94 with only direct, and 63 with only sales promotion.

An agency's listing is accompanied by its total revenue to enable the reader to place the agency's specialty components in perspective.

Divisions of agencies actually may be the "agency" listed if the parent's specialty is largely consolidated in that operation. Where divisions are identified as the agency, total agency revenue is that of the division and not the agency.

If an agency is part of an ad organization, that organization appears in brackets next to its name on the chart. Agency parents, which also may be operating units of ad organizations, are shown inside parentheses.

Interactive revenues also may be included in returns for either specialty, though they largely are in direct.

Data were collected from questionnaires agencies submitted for Advertising Age's Agency Report (April 19).

Revenue is the sum of fees plus the commissions earned from media billings and the mark-up on materials and services, the latter often called gross margin (i.e. net sales less cost of sales).

Internal operations, such as printing, database, digital imaging and internal telemarketing, were not included in specialty revenue breakouts but were included in total agency revenue figures.

Largest internal components excluded in the report amounted to $20.5 million in revenue at Rapp Collins Worldwide, New York (from its Dallas lettershop business).

Internal operations may even dominate agency returns. At Manus Direct, Seattle, database and key-entry departments, a lettershop, fulfillment operations and a warehouse are internal components that accounted for nearly 70% of its $5.7 million total revenue.

Among agencies with sales promotion on the chart, "PM" or "PS" is attached to its listing to identify how they derive their sales promotion revenue.

"PM," or promotional marketing agencies, provide an array of services but are identified by strength in fee-based activities such as strategic planning, concept development and consulting. "PS," or promotional services agencies, draw most of their revenues from tactical and executional services, i.e. couponing, games and sweepstakes.

Acquisitions continue to change the composition of the charts. Ad Age seeks to maintain the integrity of its chart entries from year to year by treating an acquisition as if the purchase were on the books for two consecutive years.

Staff for this report: R. Craig Endicott, Dataplace editor; Kevin Brown, information services editor; Susen Taras, research editor; Megan Friedly, research coordinator; Larry Edwards, managing editor; Geoffrey Shives, design director; Mike Ryan, editor, Special Reports; Kenneth Wylie, writer; Sarah

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