ABR 2009: Hill Holliday

“Direct combines a deep understanding of human behavior—both why people make decisions and how they make choices – with well articulated business and marketing objectives.”
–Mike Sheehan, CEO

Founded in Boston in 1968 by Jack Connors, Jay Hill, Alan Holliday and Steve Cosmopulos, Hill Holliday is a communications agency specializing in digital, search, e-mail and direct mail. For 38 years, Connors was the driving force behind the agency’s rise to national prominence before selling the agency to Interpublic in 1997. Current CEO Mike Sheehan now leads the Boston-based agency. 

Year founded: 1968

Holding company: Interpublic Group

Headquarters: Boston

How many offices: Three

Web site: www.hhcc.com

Major disciplines/capabilities: Direct, digital, search, e-mail

Key accounts: Bank of America, Liberty Mutual, CVS/pharmacy, Covidien Novartis, Harvard Pilgrim Health Care

Current agency challenges: The company says that adapting business practices as client business models change in light of the distressed economy is a top challenge.

Biggest 2009 industry tends: “A wider application of customer marketing and ROI-based marketing across all channels — the new ‘up’ is flat,” says Sheehan. “Clients are focused on leveraging loyal behaviors. In this climate, they are concentrating on retaining their present customer base instead of trying to expand it.”

Top executives: Mike Sheehan, CEO; Karen Kaplan, president; Kevin Moehlenkamp, EVP, chief creative officer; Lesley Bielby, EVP, chief strategy officer; Baba Shetty, EVP, chief media officer; Mark Mylan, SVP, managing director, relationship marketing

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