Four firms vie for BMC Software global AOR account

HOUSTON: IT management software company BMC Software has issued a multimillion dollar RFP for a new global AOR.

HOUSTON: IT management software company BMC Software has issued a multimillion dollar RFP for a new global AOR.

BMC has invited Weber Shandwick, Waggener Edstrom, Edelman, and W2O Group to respond to the RFP after narrowing down a list of agencies. Ogilvy Public Relations, which won the business last year following a competitive review, will not re-pitch for the account.

The pitch will take place in January, and BMC is expected to make a selection by the end of that month. Area VP and global communications leader Mark Stouse, who returned to the company in May after nearly two years at Honeywell Aerospace, is directing the search.

“I think there was a feeling among the BMC leadership that the whole program needed to go in a different direction, and that was one of the reasons they recruited me back from Honeywell,” Stouse said.

The new agency will focus on media and influencer relations in the Americas, EMEA, and APAC regions. Stouse said the selected firm will operate “very much like a sales team” and will be evaluated partly by a set of metrics. BMC recently reintroduced its media score system, in which its internal communications executives and agency team must meet a quarterly quota of points earned by securing various types of media coverage.

“We need an agency team that is essentially a sales force of sorts that is going to help us reach all the influencers that we need to reach in a concerted global way against some high performance metrics,” Stouse said. “We have created a data-driven model that connects the marketing and communications investment to the three legs of corporate performance.”

The agencies participating in the review are undergoing an intensive process during which they will answer questions and complete tests and projects before the formal pitch, Stouse said. Each firm is required to pitch only with the team that will work on the account, he added.

“Every part of the process is being graded,” he explained. “There will be a lot of little tests we use in the pitch to find out how strong that team is both individually and collectively. It's a very dynamic and unusual pitch, although similar to the one I conducted for BMC in 2006.”

In October, BMC launched a product called MyIT that gives employees more control over IT services and information.

“We're increasingly seeing the consumerization of enterprise IT,” Stouse said. “For the first time ever, we're not only speaking to the CIO and his staff but also marketing to employees in a way that is motivating and complementary to what we're saying to IT departments.”

Before hiring Ogilvy last year, Waggener Edstrom was BMC's global AOR for five years. WE decided not to re-pitch for the business last year.

"We have appreciated the opportunity to work with BMC over the past year and a half. We turn this page confident in our client work, which continues to keep Ogilvy PR in the forefront of enterprise IT,” said Luca Penati, MD of the global technology practice at Ogilvy.

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