Coates, who takes up her new role this week, will work with Freuds’ existing clients and report to Freuds CEO, Andrew McGuinness.
Coates previously worked in a number of roles for WPP in New York, LA and London, before moving to advertising agency Wieden+Kennedy. She then moved to take up the position of global head of planning and insight for EMI Music/Warner Music. Most recently she has been working as a strategic consultant for the BBC.
McGuinness said: "Freuds has always been bold in both output and recruitment. As we enter our 31st year, Eleanor will bring her senior global thinking and extensive experience to both existing and prospective clients, and will help lead our growing strategy and planning function as we examine the potential for an international footprint."
Coates added: "Freuds is a business that's always occupied its own space in the industry, it's a unique place with a fantastic energy. I'm thrilled to become a part of it and to be working with such a diverse group of very smart people. It's going to be a big year ahead."
Recent clients to join the agency include Purple Bricks, Belstaff, SCA, Jamie Oliver Foundation and Estée Lauder.