02 Aug USAA names Weber Shandwick lead corporate agency
USAA has hired Weber Shandwick as its lead corporate communications agency.
The IPG firm will bolster USAA’s overall brand and lines of business by providing “strategic, creative and operational campaign and PR services,” the firm said in a statement. Work on the account will be led out of Weber Shandwick’s Washington, DC, office.
Gail Heimann, president and recently minted CEO of Weber Shandwick, said she was “delighted” to work with the new client, which is primarily known for offering insurance, banking, investment and other solutions to military families.
“Many of our own employees are USAA members,” Heimann added in the statement. “Their enthusiastic support of this new relationship speaks volumes about the quality of the USAA customer experience.”
Chris Talley, chief comms officer and SVP at USAA, said in a statement he was “excited” to work with Weber.
“The innovative way they combine creative, strategy and media, and their genuine passion for our mission, make them a great fit with USAA,” added Talley, who started at USAA more than 10 years ago and rose to chief comms officer in the summer of 2016.
The incumbent on the account, MSL, acquired USAA’s PR business through a Publicis Groupe-wide pitch in the fall of 2016. MSL’s chief integration officer, Amy Cheronis, confirmed it parted ways with USAA “several months ago.”
MSL sister agency Saatchi & Saatchi won the creative lead slot. Razorfish handled digital, content marketing went to Prodigious, while Mediavest | Spark oversaw media buying and planning, per AdWeek.
USAA comms director Matt Hartwig said in an email that “Publicis continues to work with USAA’s marketing team.”
Weber Shandwick has a history of handling military-related work as the former longtime PR lead for the U.S. Army. PRWeek reported in late 2018 that Omnicom’s FleishmanHillard would succeed Weber Shandwick in that role. Weber’s lead on the account, EVP Eric Pehle, exited and started his own shop.
USAA reported more than $31.3 billion in revenue in 2018, with a profit of almost $2.3 billion. The company is frequently cited as a top employer, according to a statement.