Levick expands with non-crisis business practices

WASHINGTON: Levick Strategic Communications is working to shift its image from a crisis shop to a long-term partner with the brands it serves.

WASHINGTON: Levick Strategic Communications is working to shift its image from a crisis shop to a long-term partner with the brands it serves.

As part of this change, the agency is working to help new and current clients protect their images during “peace time,” said Richard Levick, president and CEO of the eponymous firm. Previously, Levick changed its image from a shop that mostly worked with law firms to one that specialized in crisis communications.

Levick has seen its non-crisis practice areas grow in recent years. For instance, its financial communications and government contracts practice areas, which were launched in late 2010, showed the most growth last year and contributed 12% to the firm's top line.

“As we have expanded many of our practice areas such as public affairs or financial communications, it's important we communicate our growth and depth,” said Levick.

As part of the rebranding, the firm reworked its website, opened a New York office, and renovated its DC location. The agency also worked with Chief, a Washington-based branding shop and created two taglines: “Communicating Trust” and “The Urgency of Now.”

Levick is using the “trust” tagline to emphasize that consumers listen more often to brands they trust in times of need, while the “urgency” tagline is reflective of how quickly an organization's brand can be negatively affected in the age of social media.

The firm has also made numerous senior hires in the past year, such as tapping John Lovallo as SVP and chair of the corporate and reputation practice and appointing Edward Belkin SVP and Kara Flynn VP. In May, it hired Jack Deschauer away from Qorvis Communications to serve as VP in its corporate practice.

The agency is also considering a West Coast presence and bolstering its international work with the help of partners.

“We look at the re-branding as something that's ongoing,” Levick said.

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