You might wonder why I am sharing this news here on The Harte of Marketing. Well, two reasons. First, Geoff Livingston is a good friend who I truly respect and learn from everyday. And… we just happen to think a lot alike on the topic of social media! So, I wanted to be able to share his good news about being acquired by CRT/tanaka with the marketing/social media community. Second, this is a trend that isn’t going away. I believe we will start to see smart agencies starting to acquire social media agencies and consultants that have solid expertise.
I had a chance to catch up with Geoff to discuss the recent news and asked him about how social media is changing the agency world as we know it.
According to Geoff, “the era of the social media consultant is coming to an end. Social media, as we know it, will need to integrate into all communications functions or else become marginalized. Social media is a capability and a toolset that needs to be incorporated across the communications frontline…including interactive, pr and advertising. It’s a toolset that every communicator needs to be aware of and needs to be able to engage in for the sole benefit of their clients. Social media is not a standalone silo and the social media department as a philosophy won’t work.”
I think those among us who truly embrace social media and want to see it implement widely within corporations, non-profits, universities, government agencies, creative agencies, etc. would probably agree on that.
Geoff’s decision to merge with CRT/tanaka is evidence that social media, even in its infancy, is still radically changing every day. For those who have been implementing social media as part of communication strategies for years know it’s time for the next challenge-and corporate-wide implementation is most likely it.
So, who is CRT/tanaka you might be wondering? Well, they are an award-winning public relations and marketing located in Richmond, Va., and New York, with offices in Los Angeles, Washington, D.C. and Norfolk, Va., CRT/tanaka has been recognized with nearly 300 national and regional awards for its strategic counsel, creativity, workplace culture and community service. [Wow!] Their clients include Air New Zealand, BISSELL Homecare, Inc., Charles Schwab & Co., Council for Responsible Nutrition, Council of Better Business Bureaus, GSK, Girl Scouts of the USA, Next Wave Pharmaceuticals, Performance Food Group, Sprint Nextel, Quebec Maple Syrup, Wines from Rioja (Spain), and VHA Inc. [I think we can safely say that they are experts in their field!]
Congratulations to Livingston Communications and CRT/tanaka!
[Image: David Alston]