Omnicom Group Launches In-Game Advertising, Influencer Marketing Unit

The Omnicom Advertising Collective, which consists of many of the holding company’s creative agencies, including Goodby Silverstein & Partners, Zimmerman and Dieste, is launching a dedicated gaming offering called LevelUp OAC. The new gaming unit will be led by The Marketing Arm and GSD&M. The offering will provide creative and media expertise to brands looking to enter the space, such as in-game media planning and buying, experiential marketing and influencer strategy.

The practice will be led by Andrew Robinson Jr., Group Director, Games at The Marketing Arm; Maria D’Amato, Executive Creative Director at GSD&M; and Dave Kersey, GSD&M Media Director. The unit will be made up of a team of 35 to 70 employees drawn from both agencies, but other stores from the holding company could also be brought into the mix depending on the project, said James Fenton, CEO of Omnicom Collective.

Responsibilities will be divided between the two agencies based on their strength, D’Amato said. The marketing arm has experience in in-game influencer engagement, experiential activation and content creation, while GSD&M has experience in creating AR and VR experiences for brands as well as in advertising in games.

Related: In-game advertising guide for brands

Pockets of expertise

“As opportunities come our way, we can align and figure out what’s the best way to meet the challenge,” Kersey said. “No matter who leads, everyone will have a role in the strategic vision and development of the game assets and environment.”

Recent examples of game-related work by the two agencies include GSD&M helping Pizza Hut deliver pizza boxes with an AR Pac-Man game on them, and State Farm including its signature character “Jake” in the NBA 2K22 video game. via The Marketing Arm.

“There are pockets of gaming expertise throughout the collective,” Fenton said. “Both of these agencies have embraced it and probably have the most robust acting abilities of any agency I’ve been exposed to.”

push play

Agencies that develop gambling offers and practices are part of a growing trend in the industry. Earlier this year, VCCP launched a gaming offering, VCCP+, which focuses on the gaming multiverse. Last September, Dentsu launched its own gaming solution called Dentsu Gaming. DDB FTW was launched as a gaming and esports unit as a separate division of the entire DDB network last April, and independent agency Omelet launched its own gaming unit called CheatCode in June 2021 Early last year, Publicis UK launched its own game offering called Publicis Play.