Edelman has hired Thomas Crampton, global principal at Ogilvy Consulting in London, as its global chair of the digital practice, effective January 2019.
Crampton, who most recently led the marketing transformation practice at Ogilvy, will be based in London and report to Richard Edelman, president and CEO of the eponymous marketing communications shop. He succeeds former digital chief Kevin King, who left Edelman this summer after nearly 15 years.
Previously, Crampton served as the global managing director for Social@Ogilvy, where he led a team of 1,500 social media experts across 60-plus territories. Before that, he launched Social@Ogilvy in Asia-Pacific, growing the offering from two people in Hong Kong to more than 400 across 23 cities.
"[Crampton] has strong experience in running a global digital team; he has a background as a journalist and a storyteller; and most importantly, he believes that digital should be integrated into the main house rather than a standalone entity," Edelman told Campaign. He added that Crampton - who he’s known for about 20 years - is a global citizen, having lived in Asia for years, now living in Europe and being from America.
"We’re having a time of extremely rapid change in terms of technology and customer habits, and many organizations were frankly created in the era of the fax machine," said Crampton. "These organizations need help adapting, so it’s about helping them understand where they stand right now and coming up with the right strategies."
Edelman’s digital practice is made up of more than 700 staffers globally and manages $200 million-plus in paid media. Some of the paid media clients include Olive Garden, Sunkist, Go Hawaii and Dairy Management Incorporated, among others.
Digital, however, touches more than just paid. It’s integrated across creative, consulting, brand safety and more. Edelman said the agency is in a unique position to focus on brand safety having handled crisis comms for the likes of United Airlines and Starbucks in the past.
Edelman’s digital practice has attracted a number of professional with non-PR backgrounds as of late, such as Chris Humber, former national head of search and social at GroupM, who is now the digital New York lead; Rhian Ryan, former VP at Digitas, who is currently head of search and social in New York; and Erica Barth, previously VP at iProspect, now, SVP and leading performance marketing in Chicago. The digital offering has also garnered awards recently from The One Show, Cannes Lions, Shorty Awards and the American Advertising Awards.