BBDO New York CMO Tara DeVeaux is stepping down from her post at the Omnicom Group agency to join Ridley Scott’s 3AM and sibling company Wild Card as its marketing chief.
DeVeaux, who has been at BBDO for about 18 months, will officially take on the newly created role of CMO for the two entertainment agencies on July 9. She is moving from New York to Los Angeles for the position.
BBDO is actively looking for a replacement for DeVeaux’s position. In the interim, the CMO responsibilities will be filled internally by other BBDO staffers.
"The business of entertainment has been a passion of Tara’s, and we fully support her desire to pursue this ambition," said Kirsten Flanik, president and CEO of BBDO New York. "We thank Tara for her contributions and wish her only the best. She will be missed."
3AM, founded four years ago as a joint venture between Ridley Scott’s RSA Films and Wild Card, focuses on brand partnerships in the entertainment space, having worked on the likes of The Martian, Alien: Covenant and Blade Runner 2049.
"Entertainment has always been a passion of mine," said DeVeaux.
However, DeVeaux said she wasn’t looking for a new opportunity when the role came up. She was working with the entertainment company to figure out ways for it to partner with BBDO, and when 3AM Managing Partner Alison Temple asked if she knew anyone based in L.A. for the CMO post, she couldn’t pass it up.
"I was so impressed by them and the work they’re doing that I knew it was the right thing, even if it wasn’t the right time," added DeVeaux.
As CMO, DeVeaux will work on the overall vision of both 3AM and Wild Card and help define the next phase of branded entertainment. In addition to getting to know the team, she said she wants to initially look at how to grow the agencies' capabilities and expand relationships with brands that are innovating and experimenting in the content and branded entertainment space.
"I’d really love to start educating brands on the potentials of entertainment partnerships and connect them with new audiences and cultural moments, which is the sweet spot," she said. "It’s about understanding a brand’s positioning and then pairing it with the right project at the right stage."
She also plans on championing diversity and inclusion in the entertainment space.
"What I’ve always loved about entertainment and pop culture is that it’s oftentimes a mirror of what’s happening in culture, but it can also change culture, so those opportunities to impact what people are seeing and experiencing is exciting. If you don’t have diverse voices sitting in positions of influence, you’ll just keep getting one perspective," she said. "It’s a tremendous responsibility to be in this role, but I take it on willingly and embrace it, and I hope in two or five years from now that it’s made a difference."
DeVeaux’s career progression – from TV to mobile marketing to traditional advertising – helps differentiate her from other CMOs in the entertainment space, she said, because she comes in with broad, integrated marketing expertise.