VML Named A Leader By Independent Research Firm

Source: Forrester Wave™: US Interactive Agencies – Strategy And Execution, Q3 2009


KANSAS CITY, MO (August 7, 2009) – VML was named a Leader in the Forrester Wave™: US Interactive Agencies – Strategy And Execution, Q3 2009.


The independent report, administered and written by Forrester Research Inc. analysts, assessed the state of the interactive agency market to see how the top U.S. digital agencies stack up against each other. The Wave evaluated the top 11 digital agencies against 39 criteria across three high-level categories.


The Forrester Wave noted VML is a Leader because of its overall strategic skills, social and emerging media prowess, unique company vision, and high client ratings. VML received the highest rating for its Current Offering.


According to Forrester: VML performs "at high levels across all major criteria including digital strategy, development and execution, measurement and analytics, social and emerging media, and a unique vision with a clear road map..."


"I’m thrilled VML was identified as a top-tier digital agency—especially considering the quality level of the other agencies that were reviewed." said Matt Anthony, VML CEO, "As we’ve grown, VML has worked hard to steadily improve our expertise in key business and performance categories."


The Wave reported a positive development for digital marketers, indicating that interactive agencies will join in leading marketing strategy for top brands. It also indicated that interactive will continue to grow at the expense of traditional marketing, where agencies skills in technology and analytics are becoming more and more crucial to success.


"VML leads because of its competence in a broad range of digital services, including top ratings for strategy, account management, and emerging media capabilities,“ Forrester’s analyst wrote in the report. "VML is best suited for brands looking to advance their overall digital strategy and skill set."


VML’s proficiency in social monitoring, content management, and valuing brand assets, was noted, as well as the agency’s emphasis on social media. VML was also praised for its leadership role in the Digital Acceleration training program for fellow WPP agencies.


"We’ve always prided ourselves on our ability to serve as a long-term client partner and integrate with other agencies," said Jon Cook, VML President, "So it was especially satisfying to be recognized for our collaboration skills and partnership activation program."


The vendor scorecard that accompanied the Wave included the following observations:

  • VML has a clear process for incorporating social and emerging media into its overall strategy. The agency has both dedicated subject experts and cross-discipline experts and uses standard and advanced knowledge sharing to maintain its skills. VML scored in the top tier of client ratings for developing social and emerging media. (Current Offering/Emerging Media Capabilities)
  • VML has a clear process for developing strategy and audience insight. The agency employs both standard and unique proprietary tools for integration with clients and other agencies, and its clients scored the agency in the top tier for strategy capabilities. (Current Offering/Strategy category)
  • VML has several blue chip brands that give the agency high scores across the board. (Market Presence/Clients category)

To conduct the review, Forrester Research fielded surveys from more than 30 agencies included in Advertising Age’s “Top 50 Digital Agencies” report. The review group was narrowed to 11, with each of the agencies having annual interactive revenue of at least $100 million in 2008, at least five new client engagements in 2008 (and a retention rate of 90 percent or better), and at least seven of following nine leading service offerings: digital strategy, web development, technology architecture and support, creative (advertising) services, email/CRM, analytics, media planning and buying, search marketing, and emerging media.


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About VML


Since 1992, VML has served as an agent of change, providing creative solutions at the intersection of marketing and technology. Selected by Advertising Age as one of the top digital marketing agencies in the United States each of the past three years, VML has been a member of the WPP Group of global communication agencies since 2001.


VML is headquartered in Kansas City, Missouri, with principal offices in New York, Seattle and London. The agency delivers best-in-class digital experiences for some of the most respected and recognizable brands in the world, including Accenture, AMC Theatres, Avid Technologies, Carlson Hotels Worldwide, Colgate-Palmolive, ESPN, Ford, Hill's Pet Nutrition, Intuit, Kansas City Royals, Microsoft, PetSmart, Sam's Club, SAP, Simon Property Group, Sprint, Western Union, Xerox and YRC Worldwide.


For these client partners and many more, VML provides a vast portfolio of award-winning services ranging from digital planning strategy to user-centric design, digital site and software development, social networking and online communities, internet search (SEO & SEM), mobile marketing, digital media planning and buying, ROI metrics and viral marketing.


VML’s proprietary SEER™ online monitoring and activation tool enables clients to connect with consumers who are not only passionate about a brand or product, but are influencers, helping establish brand advocates and driving word of mouth.