Chicago-based Novus Next transformed from an agency that specialized in newspaper freestanding inserts to a multimedia agency in 2021, working with brands including Lidl grocery, Family Dollar and Dollar Tree.
Novus Next goes from newspaper advertising to multimedia powerhouse
Novus started 35 years ago in a Minnesota garage focusing on newspaper direct response and has since used hyper-local capabilities and multimedia skills to create new campaigns for local brands. The agency, which calls itself "effective, not slick," pioneered the use of “localytics,” which focus on “analyzing the geographically based impact of media on business results,” according to Novus.
The shop became agency of record for Lidl grocery and was tasked with helping relaunch its 167 East Coast stores amid strong competition from Walmart, Trader Joe’s, Stop & Shop and Whole Foods. Novus used its “DeCoder” to analyze first- and third-party data at a ZIP code level and discovered Lidl was much smaller than other stores near them. With the data, it created the “Own Your Turf Strategy” and customized campaign assets for each location. It put a billboard discussing the store's “suspiciously low prices” on a low-hanging bridge. Brand awareness grew by double digits.
It also helped U.K.-based meeting management software maker Condeco break into the U.S. market. Novus used its data capabilities to determine that only 16 cities in the U.S. make up 80% of large employers (more than 10,000 employees). It then launched digital and audio ads in those specific geographies to bring in five times more people to Condeco's website.
Putting its analytics (and local newspaper know-how) to work enabled Novus to reach more than $10 million in revenue in 2021, with 2022 projected revenue expected to reach $14 million.