Company Profiles in association withLBB Pro

How Newly Launched M&C Saatchi One-to-One Sees the Human Behind Each Data Point

Advertising Agency
New York, USA
Managing director Georgia Graham-Leigh speaks to LBB’s Addison Capper about rebranding LIDA NY to M&C Saatchi One-to-One, how the move will allow for hyperfocus on the agency’s expertise, and how the agency is reviewing healthcare and parental leave policies in light of recent issues in the US

Earlier this month the M&C Saatchi Group announced the launch of M&C Saatchi One-to-One, "an innovative, modern CRM agency within the M&C Saatchi Group operating out of New York". In fact, the launch of the agency marks a rebrand and shift for LIDA NY, which was already part of the M&C Saatchi Group. 

LIDA was originally founded in London in 2000, and in 2017 LIDA NY opened its doors. The relaunched agency has refocused and calibrated its client proposition to meet existing and future clients' shifting needs. "M&C Saatchi One-to-One is helping brands take a more human-centric approach to customer communications by combining data, business and human intelligence to apply the right resource and solutions to achieve business and customer success," read the launch press release. 

M&C Saatchi One-to-One also launched the MarTech Studio, a platform-agnostic, backend technical and implementation service to give brands support regardless of their stage of 'MarTech' maturity. It provides on-demand data and tech services to help clients optimise their current data and marketing technology, to ensure strong ROI on CRM ecosystem management, and campaign plans. The MarTech studio offers expert support with database clean up, email integration, reporting automation, preference centres set up, IP warm up and more.

The managing director of M&C Saatchi One-to-One is Georgia Graham-Leigh, who cut her teeth at the agency, starting out in London as an account manager in 2010, eventually working her way up via a couple of short stints elsewhere. LBB's Addison Capper chatted with her about seeing the human element behind each piece of data and how the relaunch of the agency will focus its expertise. 

LBB> Tell me a bit about your path at LIDA / M&C Saatchi One-to-One. When did it start and what has led to where you are today?

Georgia> I started with LIDA London back in 2010 and worked my way up a very traditional client service career trajectory. I have always been ambitious and was lucky enough to be exposed to women leaders at LIDA that inspired me to establish myself in a male dominated industry. I am also one of four daughters with a powerhouse for a mother, so my path was (and still is) to do our sex proud!

I took a brief hiatus from agency life in 2016, vacationed to New York, and fell in love with the city and vowed I would be back. I didn’t, however, expect the return to be so soon.

I was offered the opportunity to take the next step in my career. I moved to New York with my husband and cockapoo in 2017 to open the LIDA NY start-up where I subsequently took the position of managing director in 2019. 

It’s been a journey of twists and turns; I have learnt a huge amount along the way honing my leadership and business skills. I have made mistakes and vowed to do better, trust smarter, cut the BS and stand proud. I am now at a point where I am running a profitable and growing agency alongside incredibly talented and authentic people from all walks of life. 

LBB> Sum up what M&C Saatchi One-To-One - formerly LIDA NY - does well. What is its specialism?

Georgia> M&C Saatchi One-To-One is first and foremost a consumer communications agency. We develop comms strategies and creative that speak to an individual one-to-one (vs one-to-many) across the entire customer journey. We are data and tech powered, not data and tech led, meaning we see the human behind each data point. This focus fuels our strategies to deliver at every opportunity our raison d'etre of creating and fostering Impactful Human Connections. 

As of January 2022, we created The Martech Studio a backend technical and implementation service to complement our comms strategies. The Studio provides on-demand data and tech services to help clients use and optimise their current data and marketing technology. Our platform-agnostic skillset across Salesforce, Hubspot, Adobe, Microsoft Dynamics, Siebel, Oracle, Sugar CRM, is applied to maximise ROI on CRM ecosystem management and campaign plans. We offer expertise to help with things like: database clean up, email integration, preference centres set up, reporting automation, IP warm up and more.

LBB> How does that specialism complement the wider M&C Saatchi Group?

Georgia> Our service compliments the Group’s unique set-up of being an independent network of trench tested business owners who can provide cross discipline expertise to one another. There is no traditional baton passing between businesses within the network, instead we come together when the need is greatest to provide tailored solutions to each client challenge. It is refreshing to be able to lean on neighbouring expertise and provide our clients and colleagues with the opportunity of working with one another. It strengthens relationships and ultimately fuels best-in-class work for our clients. 

LBB> Why have you decided to rebrand? What's the strategic thinking behind it?

Georgia> Much like the entire world, the past two years have given us cause for pause, reflection, and focus. With the pandemic accelerating the rise of e-commerce, one-to-one comms are recognised by brands as an important part of their integrated marketing mix. However, we have seen that many clients are not equipped to leverage the power of their existing marketing technology and data to maximise their one-to-one efforts. Our work has been focused on helping our clients do just that, so we leaned in and innovated, and this rebrand seemed like the natural next step to enable us to grow further. 

LBB> Does the rebrand signal a shift in business strategy too or will the aim and type of work still be the same?

Georgia> The type of work will be the same, it is more about solidifying our identity and focused expertise as an M&C Saatchi company. Through the rebrand we have ignited even more zest and ambition across the team to deliver against our raison d'etre of Impactful Human Connection. This is to benefit our clients and our people who dedicate so much of their time and effort in making the agency a success. 

Views: The M&C Saatchi One-to-One office

LBB> You’ve touched upon this but why does it make sense to incorporate "M&C" into the new company name? 

Georgia> As I mentioned earlier the M&C Saatchi Group offers so much expertise that we are proud to recommend it to our clients and prospects outside of our expertise. Moving forward we can further align with our sibling agencies and truly offer integrated opportunities for our staff and our clients. 

LBB> Every rebrand requires a new logo and visual identity. What was the process like for that? Tell me about it!

Georgia> Personally, it has been bittersweet. The LIDA brand is where I cut my teeth in the industry and where I returned to after exploring other career paths. It’s where I have done my best work developing award winning campaigns. However, whilst we change to align further with our parent company for a strengthened offering here in the US, the LIDA name is part of our legacy and always will be. 

The process has been so collaborative from the name to the DNA to the website to refreshed agency values. We have included everyone in the entire process with many having a hand in specific tasks. It really has been a group effort with everyone buying into and championing where we have ended up. A true testament to our culture. 

LBB> What does the second half of the year hold in store for the agency and how will this rebrand inform it?

Georgia> I am so excited about the second half of this year. We will be applying more of The Martech Studio expertise to our existing client business to strengthen their technical capabilities. Plus, we have some exciting brands we will be kicking off work with, all needing The Martech Studio expertise to set them up for scale and success. 

We have some great agency IRL events coming up too which will bring our people together safely to have some well-deserved ‘fun’. And importantly we will be continuing our volunteering efforts as individuals and as a collective so that we can live and breathe impactful human connection, beyond the work we do for our clients. 

LBB> Any parting thoughts?

Georgia> Living in the US right now, it is vitally important for me to express our support of female reproductive rights and parental childcare support. M&C Saatchi One-To-One is making a commitment to review our healthcare and parental leave policies to ensure our people feel supported, no matter what personal decision they make. 

Work from M&C Saatchi One-to-One