Instinet Retains DiMassimo

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Electronic agency securities broker Instinet Group Inc. retained DiMassimo Brand Advertising, New York, as its agency of record on an account of undisclosed size.

The agency edged Citigate Albert Frank, New York, after Instinet in September acquired rival Island ECN Inc. DiMassimo was Island's agency, and Citigate worked on Instinet.

"The mandate is a top-to-bottom-focused positioning, identity and integrated campaign that is centered on the relationship that the company has with its customers, who are traders," said Mark DiMassimo, president and creative director of his self-named agency.

Via its affiliates, Instinet lets buyers and sellers worldwide trade securities directly and anonymously with each other. Its electronic platforms offer access to more than 40 securities markets. These include Nasdaq in New York, New York Stock Exchange and bourses in London, Frankfurt, Hong Kong, Toronto, Sydney, Paris, Zurich and Tokyo.

DiMassimo clients include GlaxoSmithKline, Partnership for a Drug-Free America, Crunch Fitness and the Plaza Hotel in New York. Founded in 1996, the agency last year clocked billings of $150 million.

Along with global positioning for Instinet, DiMassimo is in charge of brand architecture and design, direct and interactive marketing, and general advertising. The agency will use media like e-mail, instant messenger, mail, print, television and inbound telephone support as well as initiate face-to-face meetings.

"It's the intersection of business-to-business marketing proposition with very important brand identity concepts," DiMassimo said.

DiMassimo's challenge is to position Instinet's value proposition in an environment in which Nasdaq -- where two-thirds of Instinet trades take place -- is itself changing. Moreover, the marketing needs to address a highly segmented audience.

"The needs of a hedge fund or a computer-based trading organization are very different from a large institution like a state pension fund," he said. "They may use different products and view Instinet in a different way."

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