August 6 2020  |  Spirits & Tobacco

CircleSquare acquires stake in digital marketing agency comtogether

By Hibah Noor

Seeking to strengthen its focus on the digital elements of campaigns for its travel retail clients, CircleSquare has announced the acquisition of comtogether

CircleSquare has announced the acquisition of a significant stake in Swiss digital marketing agency comtogether. The bright move comes as the leading experiential marketing, brand activation and consumer engagement specialist seeks to strengthen its focus on the digital elements of campaigns for its travel retail clients.

Based near Geneva, Switzerland, and with offices in Hong Kong, comtogether is an agency with a strong list of brand clients such as MSC, Maurice Lacroix, Fisherman’s Friend, Sygnum and Clinique La Prairie. Its primary focus is on data-driven digital marketing, producing campaigns – including media planning and buying – and bespoke automations, with measurable and repeatable results.

CircleSquare, which works with major travel retail players including Diageo, Mondelez and L’Oreal, says that comtogether’s deep knowledge of the Western and Chinese digital media ecosystems and its approach combining data and psychology to target shoppers were the key factors in formalizing its association with the agency.

“This is a very positive step forward for our business. We are combining [its] 14 years of experience in data analysis and media planning with our own 20 years of travel retail shopper experience to offer a strong end-to-end proposition.

A snapshot of Stéphane Zermatten, Managing Partner at CircleSquare, who looks forward to offering a strong end-to-end proposition through combined experience

comtogether is an important part of our pioneering work to make light of channel agnosticism, seamlessly blending digital and physical to allow brands to have a consistent campaign message delivered across the entire shopper journey,” says Stéphane Zermatten, Managing Partner at CircleSquare.

CircleSquare’s association with comtogether began in July 2019, with a highly successful integrated digital-meets-physical campaign for Italian eyewear specialist Luxottica.

“We worked with comtogether to target shoppers on social media with personalized messages before their trip, effectively driving awareness of the campaign and creating footfall to the physical activation at Hamburg Airport, remaining connected with the shoppers throughout their journeys.

COVID-19 has fast-forwarded the need for travel retail to look closer into digital as a means to engage shoppers and ensure a strong end-to-end omni-channel offering. Accordingly, we have noticed an acceleration of the move towards digital, in terms of both client requests and budget allocation.

In order to continue to deliver on the digital briefs at the highest standards – not only the travel retail standards, but also the local market standards – we have made an important move to acquire a major stake in a leading digital marketing agency to bring these strategic capabilities in-house,” adds Zermatten.

Philip Handley, Executive Creative Director at CircleSquare

“One of the most exciting things to come out of this acquisition is just how accurately we will be able to get precise, relevant customer data to inform our strategic planning. This will allow us to offer existing and potential new clients a unique service bringing together the best of the digital and physical worlds at the same time,” explains Philip Handley, Executive Creative Director at CircleSquare.

Charlene Lau, Head of Media Planning at comtogether in Hong Kong, who believes the secret of a successful campaign is showing up for the right customers, at the right time

“Integrated campaigns are a necessity, but the secret of a successful campaign is showing up for the right customers, at the right time, where it really matters, in a remarkable way. We are delighted to be working with a company of the stature of CircleSquare to help deliver the footfall and engagement to the irresistible experiences they are renowned for creating,” comments Charlene Lau, Head of Media Planning at comtogether in Hong Kong.


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