Led out of London by Ogilvy Europe head of broadcast and digital influence Chris Foulerton, the new group will aim to manage clients’ digital brand and reputation.
It will focus on digital issues such as designing, setting up and managing blogs, video logs, podcasts and viral programmes.
Foulerton said Ogilvy was responding to demand from clients such as Nike and Ford to help navigate the digital marketplace. It will be rolled out across Europe.
‘With recent Ipsos research showing that more than half of us change our purchasing decisions based on reading blogs, their influence is being felt deeper and stronger every day,’ he said.
‘We’d go as far as to say that in due course clients need to be putting up to 30 per cent of their comms budget into digital media.’
Foulteron added that while Digital Influence intends to plan, implement and track blogging activity on behalf of clients, Ogilvy does not necessarily advocate ‘corporate blogging’, whereby PR ghostwriters blog on behalf of their clients, often on corporate websites. Instead, Foulerton and his team will embark on ‘blogger relations’ campaigns.
‘It’s all about strategy, understanding what’s being said in the media, and mapping digital conversations,’ said Foulteron.