Kevin Adler, former Vice President of Sponsorships and Events at Publicis-owned Relay Worldwide, announced his departure and the creation of a new integrated marketing agency with a focus on sponsorships, events and promotions, Engage Marketing. In addition to launching his own agency, Adler is introducing client-side brand marketers to a new marketing discipline which he calls Engagement Marketing.
“Engagement Marketing represents a fundamental paradigm shift in how brands enter into dialogues with their consumers, by putting the needs, desires and interests of the consumer before the needs of the brand” said Adler. He goes on to note that the Engagement Marketing philosophy of optimizing the consumer relevance of a brand’s interaction with its audience starts during the planning process and weaves its way through every layer of the consumer dialogue, including a brand’s positioning and how the brand articulates its message / value proposition to consumers.
In addition to consulting with brands on how to apply the Engagement Marketing philosophy to their brand message, Adler’s new agency will focus on helping brands connect to their target audiences through the use of sponsorships, events and promotions. The agency will offer consulting, execution and measurement services and articulates its primary value proposition as being a unique approach to strategy development called the ‘Engagement Planning Process’, which Adler refers to as a “consumer-centric, needs-based planning model”.
Adler had been one of the first employees of Starcom Sports Marketing under CEO Wally Hayward in 1999. Starcom Sports Marketing re-launched in December of 2001 as Relay as part of the overall merger / acquisition between Publicis and BCOM3 (the holding company that owned Starcom, Leo Burnett, MediaVest, etc.).
During his tenure with Starcom Sports Marketing / Relay, Adler developed and implemented sponsorship and event strategies for clients such as Allstate (Women’s World Cup sponsorship and U.S. Soccer Federation), Hallmark (Salt Lake Winter Olympic Sponsorship and various figure skating platforms), LEGO (creation of global, multi-year licensing and sponsorship deals with the NBA, NHL, Gravity Games and top action sports athletes), Nintendo, Kellogg’s and others. Adler oversaw Relay’s strategic consulting, business development, research, and creative teams during his time with the agency. He is a nationally recognized expert in the field of sports marketing, has been featured as a speaker at multiple industry conferences and has been quoted in national press such as the Wall Street Journal, CNBC, Time Magazine, The Today Show, and others.
The agency begins with initial assignments from Crocs, Wilson Golf, and Killerspin.