NEW YORK (October 11, 2012) — Digitas, a digitally-led, integrated global brand agency, announces the hire of Lesley Bielby in the newly-created role of Executive Vice President of North America Planning. Boston-based Bielby reports to Colin Kinsella, CEO, Digitas North America, and is a member of Kinsella’s North America Leadership Team. Bielby’s immediate charge is to establish strategic planning best practices, processes and standards, uniting the capability across Digitas’ seven offices in the United States. Bielby leads the 45-person planning staff.
Bielby’s hire comes as the agency significantly boosts its planning capability. Over the last year planning has experienced tremendous growth, attracting top talent from BBDO, The Martin Agency, Isobar, Ogilvy, Edelman, and RCA. In addition, the Chicago and San Francisco teams have quadrupled in size and the New York team has tripled, as the capability continues to pioneer new models of integration that deliver world-class marketing and creative ideas to clients.
“Lesley’s appointment demonstrates the agency’s commitment to strategic planning,” says Kinsella. “She’s a seasoned strategist, and has a passion for insight discovery. She joins Digitas with impressive credentials that include big brand experience and integrated channel expertise. We’re thrilled to have her on board and ready to hit the ground running, building teams that create ideas that move people in new ways for our clients.”
Bielby, a Scottish native, joins Digitas with 23 years of experience in strategic and brand planning across major national and global advertising agencies in the UK and the US.
Prior to joining Digitas, she was Chief Strategy Officer at MMB, and prior to that, Chief Strategy Officer at Hill Holliday. At Hill Holliday, Bielby evolved, managed and integrated planning disciplines across the agency network. She also played a lead strategic role on a wide variety of national accounts including Dunkin’ Donuts, Chili’s, Verizon Wireless, American Red Cross, Smith Barney, Bank of America, and Merrill Lynch. Before Hill Holliday, Bielby was Director of Account Planning at both Merkley and Partners and McKinney. Bielby began her career in the UK working for innovative creative shops such as Collett Dickenson Pearce and Partners, Bainsfair Sharkey Trott and Howell Henry Chaldecott Lury and Partners, which was honored as “Agency of the Decade” by Campaign magazine.
Digitas, a digitally-led, integrated global brand agency, builds brands for some of the foremost companies in the world. In 2012 Digitas was named OMMA Magazine’s Agency of the Year and The Drum’s London Integrated Agency of the Year. Digitas was also the winner of nine Cannes Lions in 2012, The agency also counts Agency of the Year honors from the Festival of Media, BtoB Magazine, and Les Agences de I’Annee, France, and has been named to the Advertising Age Digital A-List among its many awards.
Digitas also operates the brand content platform, The Third Act:, producers of first and most well renowned event on digital content. The NewFront and Prodigious Worldwide, the world’s only standalone, global digital productions company.
With sister agencies Starcom MediaVest, ZenithOptimedia, Denuo and Razorfish, Digitas is a member of Publicis Groupe’s VivaKi — a global digital knowledge and resource center that leverages the combined scale of the autonomous operations of its members to develop new services, new tools, and new partnerships.
Publicis Groupe [listed on the Euronext Paris Exchange and part of the CAC 40 index] is the world’s third largest communications group. With activities spanning 104 countries on five continents, Publicis Groupe offers local and international clients a complete range of advertising services. Web site: www.publicisgroupe.com.