The shop will open offices in the UK, the US, Canada, Australia, the Philippines, Mexico and Malaysia. It will work on strategy, creative, influencer marketing, production, distribution, paid social and analytics.
In the UK, Society sits alongside Reprise, Stickyeyes and Mubaloo, IPG’s search, digital marketing and mobile agencies respectively.
Craig Lister, managing director for search and social at IPG Mediabrands EMEA, will lead Society in the UK until he finds a permanent head.
Society is already working with IPG Mediabrands clients The Economist, Canon, the All England Lawn Tennis Club and Malaysia Airlines. It will also pitch for new business separately. Lister explained that Society was launching in the UK in response to client calls for "a social agency with a strong media and analytics background".
Society UK will be based in IPG Mediabrands’ London offices. Of the shop’s 32 staff, 22 previously worked in a social role at IPG Mediabrands and ten were recruited from other parts of the business.
Lister denied that Society is a rebrand of IPG Mediabrands’ previous UK social media division, citing its additional skills and services. One such capability is Heart, a tool that analyses news, blogs, social media and TV to identify "content that is resonant, audiences that are relevant and channels that drive ROI for clients".
Lister plans to recruit more staff and expand Society across EMEA.