Publicis hires first chief data and commerce officer for its PR agencies

Publicis Groupe has made a senior appointment from WPP agency SJR to a new, wide-ranging role focused on data insight for its Influence division, which includes MSL, Taylor Herring and Salterbaxter.

New hire: Mark Thomson joins from corporate communications consultancy Group SJR
New hire: Mark Thomson joins from corporate communications consultancy Group SJR

In addition to focusing on data insight, Mark Thomson's remit in the new role is to build on the launch of MSL's data-led insights platform – the MSL Belief Stack

Thomson has 25 years of experience in data across a wide range of sectors, including luxury retailing, banking, publishing and automotive. He spent seven years in Tech City, working with start-ups and tech companies such as King, Giffgaff and Skype. At SJR, he oversaw the development and adoption of data services for content marketing, social and corporate reputation programs. 

Thomson said: “It’s an exciting time to join the Influence practice at Publicis Groupe. There’s a strong commitment to an exciting vision and a team of exceptionally inspiring data professionals to collaborate with across the Groupe. It’s a dream.”

Chris McCafferty, chief executive of Publicis Groupe's Influence practice, said: “Most clients are awash with ‘what’ and ‘how’ data, but have very little insight that tells them ‘why’. Step one in our data stack was the MSL Belief Stack – a unique insights tool that unearths the deep-held beliefs of audiences. Mark’s here to design steps two, three and four and help demonstrate the benefits of progressive data strategies to corporate reputation and brand love.”

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