Bloomberg’s 60-person creative agency is branching out

Since Bloomberg launched its internal creative agency six years ago, the team has touched almost every part of the company’s business — working on branding, content and video. But this week, it’s coming out with new work — and it’s for a paying client.

The agency is unveiling a giant out-of-home campaign for Morgan Stanley outside the bank’s headquarters in Times Square this week. The bank, in an atypical move, tapped the company’s internal agency to create a new vision that will live outside the bank’s building.

It’s a branching-out for Bloomberg’s agency, a 60-person team mostly based in New York but with some people in London, Singapore and Hong Kong. The team has mostly been under-the-radar since it launched six years ago and has so far just done work for Bloomberg corporate. But like other publishers, Bloomberg is building up agency expertise throughout the company. For example, in July, it hired its first creative ad director, Allan Wai, to oversee Bloomberg Media Studios — a separate entity from the internal agency. Having agency chops within a publishing entity, it turns out, is helpful when it comes to creating smart new ad formats that will be noticed by customers.

Deirdre Bigley, chief marketing officer at Bloomberg, said that about nine months ago, Morgan Stanley contacted Bloomberg because the company does a lot of interesting work inside its own Lexington Avenue headquarters in New York city. Morgan Stanley asked if Bloomberg had any recommendations for people to do the work.

According to Bigley, the company had a meeting with Morgan Stanley and came away thinking, “we could do this.”

Morgan Stanley, of course, is a huge existing client for corporate parent Bloomberg LP, which creates financial products like the lucrative terminals, information via briefs and indexes and other enterprise products for financial and government clients.

So Bloomberg’s internal agency, headed by executive creative director Damian Totman, pitched for the project alongside other, more mainstream ad agencies. They won. The result is large scale signage outside Morgan Stanley that features high-definition visualizations of Bloomberg data, news and information that will appear screens outside the building. There are 1,800 “blocks” of content available that will rotate over a 19-hour period every day.

Bigley said this is, for now, a one-off for the agency. “Morgan Stanley is such a great client and it’s an opportunity to solidify our relationship,” she said. “But you never know where we go next.”

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