News Briefs


Clear Channel Outdoor Partners with Aqfer


Clear Channel Outdoor (CCO), an out-of-home (OOH) media company, has teamed up with Aqfer, a data marketing company, to enhance secure data collaboration capabilities through data clean rooms. Aqfer's solutions enable CCO to securely leverage a brand's first-party data for OOH campaign planning, measurement and optimization, according to a media release.

Data clean rooms have gained in popularity in recent years as advertisers seek to adhere to regulatory and consumer privacy demands.

By layering in Aqfer's capabilities into CCO’s audience insights platform (dubbed RADAR), CCO now provides an interoperable clean room framework. Brands and their agency partners can collaborate with CCO on audience targeting and campaign amplification with improved audience behavior analysis, regardless of where the underlying data is stored. This means brands will not have to be locked into a singular provider's ecosystem in order to leverage RADAR and securely access insights from sensitive data without sacrificing security, privacy or performance.

"More and more data-driven brands and advertisers are recognizing the power of OOH to deliver their message to the right audience segments with measurable impact and at scale," Jeremy Flynn, senior vice president, data products and strategy, Clear Channel Outdoor, said in the release. "Aqfer is helping us accelerate the adoption of OOH in the media mix by powering an interoperable DCR solution without compromising privacy, security, or the hassles of data transfers among multiple cloud providers."

"Facilitating data clean rooms is a natural evolution of our technology that Clear Channel  Outdoor utilizes in the partnership with Aqfer for their RADAR suite of solutions,” Marc Sabatini, chief strategy officer at Aqfer, added.

Aqfer is a marketing data platform-as-a-service helping clients streamline their marketing data management processes and facilitate real-time insights in a privacy-first world.

CCO’s OOH platform connects advertisers with consumers every month with its 500,000-some print and digital displays in 21 countries.


7-Eleven Seeks ‘Brands With Heart'

7 eleven


7-Eleven is calling on innovative and emerging CPG brands to apply to the retailer's fifth annual Brands with Heart program, which gives brands the opportunity to have their products added to the shelves of 7-Eleven, Speedway and Stripes stores across the U.S. The application process is live at and will remain open through the end of July.

The retailer is looking for items across categories that meet the needs of its on-the-go customers, including snacks, beverages, alcoholic beverages and better-for-you products, according to a media release.

Whether the product is ready to hit the shelves or still in the development stages, all emerging brands are encouraged to apply. Submissions will be reviewed throughout the month of August. Standout products will be invited to attend the Brands with Heart showcase Nov. 1-3 in Irving, Texas. There brands will present to company employees and meet with merchandising teams for coaching and mentoring.

Following the showcase, select brands will be invited to participate in an in-store test at select 7-Eleven, Speedway and Stripes stores across the U.S.

"7-Eleven has a legacy of innovation from to-go coffee to self-serve soda fountains and Brands with Heart is just another example of how we're innovating to meet customers' needs," Nikki Boyers, vice president of private brands at 7‑Eleven, said in the release. "The Brands with Heart showcase allows us to scout for the best new products for our customers, while also giving smaller brands the chance to shine."

"We look forward to the Brands with Heart showcase every year," added Adam Franks, director of private and emerging brands at 7-Eleven. "We love helping these up-and-coming brands grow and thrive. In fact, Elite Donuts is an alum of the Brands with Heart program, which is sold in many of our stores today across the country."



Lisa Roath Named Target's Chief Marketing Officer


Target promoted 17-year company veteran Lisa Roath (pictured) to executive vice president and chief marketing officer in July. She now leads Target’s core marketing functions, including creative, guest marketing strategy, retail brand experience, social media, paid media strategy and marketing strategy and operations.

Roath reports to Cara Sylvester, EVP and chief guest experience officer.  

“Marketing plays such an important role in Target’s guest experience and brings to life the inspiration, care and connection people feel when they shop with us,” Sylvester said in a media release. “[Roath’s] detailed understanding of the retail landscape, her experience leading teams to deliver strong business results and her deep knowledge of and empathy for our guests make her the ideal candidate to steward Target’s brand and grow our relationship with guests.” 

During her tenure at Target, Roath most recently served as senior vice president of food and beverage merchandising. She led the team through a period of “explosive growth” as Target increased its annual food and beverage sales by more than $5 billion since 2019, according to the release. During that time, Roath also helped quadruple the number of emerging brands in its assortment. Prior to that, she held a variety of leadership roles across the company, including on the pricing and promotions and merchandising teams.   

In another mass merchant personnel move, Insite AI, an AI-enabled category and revenue growth partner for large CPGs, hired Walmart’s former vice president of merchandising, Kristine Joji, as EVP of strategy consulting. During her more than 20 years at Walmart, Joji worked with executives at top CPGs in dry goods and consumables. In her new role, she will leverage her extensive experience in driving merchandising strategies to help Insite AI’s CPG clients further elevate their retail partnerships.


Omnicom to Acquire German Creative Agency


Global marketing and communications company Omnicom Group is acquiring Grabarz & Partner to bolster its position in Germany and gain more advertising market share.

Founded in 1993, Grabarz & Partner is a creative agency headquartered in Hamburg, Germany. With more than 260 employees, the agency works with global and local clients such as Deutsche Bahn, Ikea, Lidl and Porsche.

The transaction is expected to close during the third quarter of 2023. Following the closing, Grabarz & Partner's management team will continue to serve in their current roles.

"We're thrilled to add one of the most creative agencies in Germany to our roster and to lean into its stellar reputation in one of Europe's most important economic regions for our clients," said John Wren, chairman and CEO of Omnicom, in a media release. "Our shared vision for creative excellence is what drew us to them, and we look forward to the impact they'll make as part of Omnicom.”

"Throughout our 30 years of existence, we've received many offers for our agency,” Ralf Heuel, co-founder and managing partner at Grabarz & Partner, said in the release.  “Omnicom was the first one that truly piqued our interest as they presented us a tailor-made plan that took into account our goals and vision, our strategy as a creative agency, and, above all, our unique culture formed by the last three decades."



UK Grocer Morrisons Bolsters Loyalty, Promotions Capabilities


U.K. supermarket chain Morrisons and marketing technology company Eagle Eye Solutions have entered into a five-year agreement to further develop the retailer’s loyalty and promotional offerings.

Morrisons will leverage Eagle Eye's API-based AIR platform to enhance its loyalty program, Morrisons More, which allows customers to benefit from exclusive prices and earn points on selected products in-store, online and on fuel. The new capabilities enhance customer engagement online and in-store, and help the supermarket scale the number of broadcast and targeted/personalized offers available, according to a media release from Eagle Eye. 

The upgraded experience will roll out to all 499 stores nationwide and is expected to go live later in 2023.

"This has been a transformational year for our More Card loyalty scheme, and we are very pleased to be working with Eagle Eye, who are an acknowledged leader in this field, as we implement our plans to develop the scheme still further for our customers,” Rachel Eyre, Morrisons chief customer and marketing officer, said in the release.

In May, Morrisons brought back its More Card loyalty program to replace its My Morrisons app following a successful trial. The Morrisons More program can be used as a physical card or app to earn points.

In January, Eagle Eye completed its acquisition of Untienots SAS (known as Untie Nots), a French SaaS company that enables retailers to develop personalized and gamified promotions at scale.


Giant Food Names Creative Agency of Record

giant food

Ahold Delhaize’s Giant Food has named Heart & Soul Marketing its strategic creative agency of record.

The regional grocer, which has stores across Washington D.C., Delaware, Maryland and Virginia (DMV), has tapped the boutique agency to develop a fresh brand campaign focused on a “shared sense of community” that helps modernize its image, while maintaining its position as a local grocery chain in the metropolitan area, according to a media release.

Heart & Soul will lead the creative concepting and campaign development for television, radio, out-of-home, seasonal and in-store. The campaign is slated to debut in early 2024. It will showcase Giant Food’s roots in the DMV and how it “nourishes its community through great food and strong human connections,” per the release.

"We have been proud to be a part of the community for over 87 years and [Heart & Soul Marketing’s] fresh perspective and commitment to connecting with consumers aligns with our vision to share the stories that make Giant Food so special to the 165 communities that we serve," Dyani Hanrahan, vice president of marketing for Giant Food, said in the release.

Heart & Soul was selected through a nationwide request-for-proposal process spearheaded by the Mercer Island Group, a management consulting firm in Washington and longtime partner of Giant Food and Ahold Delhaize.

Heart & Soul was founded in 2020 and is based in Phoenix. As Giant Foods’ agency partner, Heart & Soul will be responsible for bringing the overarching brand strategy and creative direction to life while supporting seasonal campaigns and the retailer’s growth drivers.

The Giant Food account is expected to increase the size of Heart & Soul by at least 20% as it adds positions in account services, copywriting, graphic design, production artists and social media.