MSQ recruits first chief data officer for expansion drive

robert goodwin 2MSQ, the agency group behind Stack, The Gate, Walk-in Media and Twentysix, is aiming to bolster its data-driven marketing credentials with the appointment of the group’s first chief data officer.

Robert Goodwin joins MSQ from Wunderman Thompson UK, where he has been data strategy team lead since November 2018, heading up the data operations on the Shell global business, as well as the combined BT and EE brief and Samsung, Toyota and Selfridges accounts.

He joined from Outra, where he had a spell as chief client officer, and prior to that Goodwin was data strategy partner at Lida (now M&C Saatchi) and data planning director of JWT Worldwide.

In the newly created role at MSQ, he will be responsible for putting data at the heart of the group’s operation, ensuring clients receive best-in-class thinking across data analytics, data planning and data science functions.

The group says Goodwin will also support the development of what it calls the new “dynamic content capability”, which will be implemented later this year following the group’s strategic partnership with creative production business Brave Spark.

Based in MSQ’s London office, Goodwin will work closely with customer agency Stack, helping the business deliver further growth. He will also support The Gate London and Walk-In Media, MSQ’s creative and media agencies, and build connections with MSQ’s data teams outside of London, creating a more consistent data-led proposition at group agencies such as Twentysix and Stein IAS.

Goodwin said: “I am delighted to be joining such a high calibre team at MSQ. I’ve been really impressed with the ambition of the group and the plans it has to genuinely put data at its heart, to provide clients with true business-changing solutions.”

Goodwin is the latest in string of senior appointments to the company, including Kate Howe, who joined as executive director from Dentsu Aegis Network in February, and Charles Courtier, the former MEC Global chief executive, who has joined as chairman.

The group has also backed the launch of Walk-In Media, the new media agency launched by former Blue 449 chief executive Simon Davis.

In June, MSQ announced its intention to buy the Be Heard Partnership and three of its agencies – MMT Digital, technology and data consultancy agency Freemavens and Agenda21. The potential deal, which is subject to shareholder approval, aims to accelerate MSQ’s growth by building scale and increasing its technical capabilities, particularly in digital tech and data analytics.

Kate Howe said: “Our mission is to help businesses build High EQ brands that attract and grow valuable customers. In order to do that, we need to make sure that we provide joined-up, cutting-edge data capabilities at every touchpoint. That’s why it’s important to us to have someone who can drive our data offer across the group, and as soon as we met Rob, we knew that he was the right person to do just that.”

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