In a global re-alignment of its CRM (customer retail management) business, DDB Group has announced the launch of Track, a new name in CRM, which will replace the Rapp brand across New Zealand and Australia.
DDB Group Australia and New Zealand chairman, Marty O’Halloran says the timing is right to invest in the CRM network as there is an increased focus on the integration of CRM capabilities across clients and platforms.
The move follows Rapp Germany, which changed to Track last year and was joined by offices in North America, Europe and Asia and O’Halloran says he is excited to be following suit.
“We have enjoyed a highly successful relationship with Rapp for many years but we are at a scale and time in the business’ life cycle that we need the freedom to invest further in CRM capabilities and control our offering more in local markets. We have significant plans to re-launch and grow the business across Australia and New Zealand as well as integrate these into the broader strategic framework of Group clients.”
The recently appointed Christine Gardner will run Track Sydney while incumbent Rapp managing directors in Auckland and Melbourne, Rob Limb and Tess Doughty respectively, will remain in their roles. All existing Rapp staff will transfer to Track.
Limb says he has enjoyed a successful period with Rapp over the last 10 years but it's perfect timing to be apart of the new network.
“Track sets us up to invest in the capabilities and partnerships we need to help our clients navigate unprecedented change and transform the way they connect with their customers.”
While for now Limb says the launch is “essentially a name change and a new lick of paint”, he says the Track group has its own focus, different to Rapp.
“Our focus is all about growing customer value and we are really positioning ourselves as a customer growth agency, which is really the acquisition of customers and nurturing customers as well.”
He says there’s a lot of opportunity for clients at the moment around data and technology and refers to Track as a “navigator” for clients, rather than a “hero”, as it will work alongside them, and behind the scenes, during times of change.
Despite Track not operating in the same countries as Rapp, Limb says its relationship with the Rapp offices remains strong. He gives an example of this with the hire of Nicola Henshaw, directly from the Rapp office in London, as a new planning director.
Her arrival in the last three weeks is one of a 10 recent hires for Track, with further growth seen in the creative team, in digital design development and client services. Sarndra Bell has come on board as the head of client services.
The growth is set to continue as the search is on for two senior account directors.
When asked about the name 'Track', Limb says he doesn’t want to overcook it, but says one reason comes from the role Track intends to play as a navigator for clients and the second he says recognises the importance of customer power and the need to track and follow them closely.
“Gone are the days where we can just push communication on customers," Limb says. "They have too much power and control, we really need to follow customers, track their movements, track where they are and deliver what’s important to them.”
Limb also mentions fear that his suits are going to start wearing tracksuits. But we will have to wait and see.