Traditional Brand Advertising is Broken. Despite Gloomy Economy, R2C Group’s Hybrid Approach Explodes Among Blue Chip Brands

Amidst a Shaky Economy, Big Brand Fortune 500 Companies Seek a New Hybrid Brand/Direct Response Advertising Strategy; R2C Group Rises to the Occasion

PORTLAND, Ore.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–With a gloomy national economic season looming, reinforced by exploding fuel prices and rising unemployment reports, it’s no surprise that the advertising industry is also anticipating a season of uncertainty. Marketing professionals are experiencing increasing challenges daily, virtually unable to discern tangible results, while simultaneously paying growing media rates that aren’t justified. Ad Age’s top story in the June 23rd issue confirms “Big marketers, facing a weakening economy…clamped down on spending (in 2007).” As evidenced by recent shifts of many Fortune 500 marketing budgets, it’s clear the advertising industry is on the verge of a major overhaul.

86% of marketers claim pressure is mounting for tangible results

According to the 2008 “State of the Marketer” survey report from Eloqua, accountability pressure is growing: 86 percent of marketers say pressure has increased on them to account for results. Moreover, 68 percent of organizations are measuring the quantifiable contribution of marketing to the bottom line.

Tim O’Leary, co-founder and CEO of Portland, Oregon-based R2C Group, has some thoughts on what’s got to give. “A recession can be good for marketers and agencies that are equipped to take advantage of opportunities,” claims O’Leary, who has led the nation’s largest independently-owned direct response advertising agency to rapid growth and more than $420 million in annual billings.

While many marketers are finding it harder and harder to measure the “success” of their dollars spent, and many of them using tired, traditional strategies, O’Leary and company are succeeding with a form of marketing that can be measured: integrated direct response advertising. O’Leary scoffs at how many big agencies continue to reinvent themselves creatively, without delivering bottom line results to their clients: “Publicly traded advertising agencies just don’t have their clients’ best interests at heart anymore.”

Advertising dollars are moving away from traditional strategies

According to Fitch Ratings, “The trend that will continue to affect the media universe…is the ongoing shift in advertising dollars from traditional media into non-traditional media…and ad spending continues to follow consumer patterns.” Focused on their client’s bottom line, R2C Group has experienced exponential growth over the past three years, thanks to a steady diet of big brand, Fortune 500 clients flocking to R2C Group for their unique and untraditional, results-driven approach.

R2C Group has rapidly evolved from a small direct response agency to an industry-leading, full-service advertising agency. The company’s recent acquisition of Chautauqua Communications, a San Francisco-based firm specializing in digital, interactive and online direct response solutions, further expands its service offering by adding online creative and digital media buying expertise to its integrated direct response offerings. These new capabilities are the perfect compliment, allowing R2C Group to directly connect direct response television campaigns to their client’s online and interactive strategies, with highly trackable results. R2C Group consists of: Respond2, the nation’s leading independently owned direct response creative agency, and Cmedia, an industry-leading media planning, research and buying agency.

Creative agency Respond2 became virtually married to its sister company, Cmedia, in 1999 when respective owners, Tim O’Leary and Michelle Cardinal, tied the knot themselves. Cardinal, president and co-founder of R2C Group, led Cmedia to explosive growth over the past 10 years, ranking Cmedia as the largest women-owned company and one of the largest privately held companies in the State of Oregon by the Portland Business Journal’s Book of Lists. Profiled in Inc. Magazine as one of the nation’s “Most Fascinating Entrepreneurs,” Cardinal is widely considered among peers and industry insiders as a pioneer in her field.

Fortune 500 companies are flocking toward results-driven approach

From newer, emerging brands to Fortune 500 companies, R2C Group’s clients have one thing in common; they are all dependent on generating profitable ROI from their advertising. O’Leary enjoys challenging the status quo, comparing his agency to what he refers to as “old school, old media, traditional brand agencies.” He asserts, “Unlike traditional brand agencies, R2C Group practices what it preaches: capturing, captivating and converting sales across all channels. We don’t just get results — we build brands by creating trackable, measurable, ongoing relationships with each and every customer.”

Is there a difference between the super-agencies’ big-budget campaigns and the R2C Group’s hybrid direct response/branded strategy? Cardinal says Yes. “R2C Group’s work is completely measurable and accountable. In fact, we’re the only agency on the planet that can directly correlate a television ad campaign with a client’s online and interactive strategies with equally measurable results. Many of our big brand clients are using direct response television campaigns not only to grow direct and online sales, but also to bolster their retails efforts too.” R2C’s portfolio of success among well known big brands is growing rapidly, and includes the likes of Google General Mills, Proctor & Gamble, Microsoft, Phillips, Merck, The Home Depot, Adobe, eBay, Vonage, Sprint, Chase, Blockbuster, Bare Minerals, KitchenAid and many more.

This newly-integrated direct response pioneer wants the world to know who they are and why they’re succeeding for their clients… and more importantly, why in the midst of a tumultuous economy, you should care.

R2C Group is a full-service advertising agency, specializing in direct response solutions, including direct response television (DRTV), online and interactive advertising, and complete media strategies. For more information on R2C Group, explore their new website at: