11 responses to “vml axed by dr pepper snapple group

  1. sucks for us KC folks… I’ve been trying to get a job at VML (as it is one of the few agencies in KC) for a while now. So it doesn’t look like they’ll be hiring any time soon.
    This also means that VML’s mini fridges will no longer be fully stocked with Cadbury Schweppes products like they were when I visited there a few months back.
    Hope no one loses their jobs but things don’t look good.

  2. This does indeed suck – sorry to hear it. Both VML and KC will rebound from it, but losing it isn’t fun.

  3. Just a couple notes:
    – Fridges are still stocked
    – Odd thing is, people are still being hired
    – There was some house cleaning recently, but see bullet #2

    And losing the BK interactive account didn’t result in any firings of any sort – that was foreseen long before it actually happened.

  4. @ Genius – Just a couple notes back at ya:
    – You lost two big accounts
    – People always continue to get hired through account losses because others read the writing on the wall and leave (I saw the phenomenon myself at Fallon)
    – What do you think drove the first round house cleaning?
    – Losing BK may have been foreseen, but how can you staff against business you don’t have?

    I like VML and I think that the work you guys did, especially the Snapple and Sunkist website redesigns, has been solid. I’m not ripping you guys…you especially didn’t deserve the Dr Pepper/Snapple Group loss…let’s just be realistic about what is going to happen: more house cleaning until costs get into line with income.

    And I hope that you’re not still stocking Dr Pepper, but if so you’re not the only WPP agency that still is…

  5. Genius is as genius does

    – Not debating the fact at all – the accounts were big, so now we have to rely on what’s in the pipeline. But yes, times have been better.
    – Official word is that all the people let go were due to performance reasons. Which I can somewhat buy. Nobody that I know has left of their own accord yet – but then again, it’s a big company (okay, technically it’s a mid-size company, whatev)
    – The first round house cleaning? I’ve only been witness to one.

    Still got the Dr stocked. I hope they don’t take it away, I really like the diet berry flavored one.

    As for future “cleanings” – hope not, but we’ll find out in due time.

  6. Here is a little nugget….

    VML adding billings, staff
    The Kansas City Star
    Mon, Jul. 28, 2008

    VML has been on a strong new-business run the past several months, adding millions of dollars in new billings, as well as new jobs at the interactive agency.

    The Kansas City-based agency, part of the worldwide agency holding company WPP, has added a half-dozen new names to its agency roster, not bad in an environment in which many are struggling to hold on to existing clients. With its bread-and-butter in online and interactive, VML is well-positioned to help clients navigate the most effective ways to reach consumers in the changing world of media.

    New clients include the Cartoon Network, ESPN, Hallmark, Jägermeister, Petsmart and Kansas City Power & Light. Projects range from global to national to just down the street.

    Agency president Jon Cook declined to put an exact dollar on additional billings, saying only that it was “millions of dollars.” Cook said the agency has added 40 employees in the past three months and is “aggressively looking for more staff for our Kansas City, New York, London and Seattle offices. Growing fastest in creative and account management.”

    Here’s a rundown of new clients:

    •Cartoon Network: VML is helping the network spread its brand globally, including throughout Europe and into South Africa.

    •ESPN: Working with the sports network to take ESPN College GameDay and translate that to an adjacent online experience.

    •Jägermeister: VML will roll out the U.S. version of the company’s Web site.

    •Hallmark: The agency will work with the greeting card maker on how online users experience its Web site.

    •Kansas City Power & Light: Working with its Energy Solutions group on online and offline projects including integrated strategic planning.

    •Petsmart: The Phoenix-based pet retailer had the foresight to buy the http://www.pets.com url several years ago from that online retailer, best remembered for Mr. Sock Puppet, and hold on to it for another day. That new day will come later this year when VML helps it build a new online social community for pet parents. (Cook said an unusually large number of VML employees, including a staffer who has the No. 1 pug page on MySpace, raised their hands to work on the Petsmart account.)

    Finally, a few words from a small lesson learned.

    “You know how you sometimes use expressions that include animals, like the one, ‘kill two birds with one stone’?” Cook said. “Well, I learned the hard way, don’t do that at Petsmart.”

  7. Wait – I’m missing something here…@James Feess – are you kidding me? VML is… “one of the few agencies in KC.”

    There are more agencies in KC than in many larger markets. I think you need to do more research.

  8. Check out the comments about the Jennifer Mann article on the KC Star’s web site:


  9. Employee No Longer

    Okay, okay. . I have just been able to calm down enought to write a reply on this. I have followed the previous posts on this blog about VML for some time. Every stinkin’ post is absolutly true – no if ands or buts about it. VML is probably one of the worst places I have ever worked in my life. And I will not be the ONLY employee or previous employee to tell you the same. If you are ready to work 15 hour days and get no respect from management or your creative department (Mr. Tony S.) then sign up – as I can personally vouch that nearly 25 people were FIRED from VML recently. It is the egos, it is the immaturity, it is the personalities that scream ‘I AM GOD’S GIVE TO ONLINE ADVERTISING” that will sink that ship, if it already hasn’t crippled it so much it can’t get out of the way of the competition.

    Its a soul-sucking place to be brutally honest. I watched them fire a girl who worked there that was doing a great job on her account. She was liked by everyone except her manager because the client and employees like her better. So, he was buddies with the VP of account services and he went to him and got her fired – FOR NO REASON other than people like her better than him. The sad thing is, that this wasn’t the first time it has happened.

    It’s no wonder cadbury fired VML. VML can’t even get their act together enough to figure out how to treat their employees right, let alone a client.

    Thanks – I fell better now that I spoke a little of my mind. It’s not right how VML treats employees. I hope me and my friends land jobs soon.

  10. Ralph Lauren Button Up

    Wow, thank you for your fascinating insight Mr. Jay Bailey. You wonder why you lost your job??? Maybe if you would have put half as much effort into your job as an Account Manager rather than into message boards like this, you might still have a job. Oh wait, that doesn’t change the fact that you were horrible at your job. My bad.

  11. This is a sad post to read, I am very upset to hear that VML has fallen so far. What about the recent firing of very long time employees who too the initiatve to look for work and were fired. If you are not happy with the job and management doesn’t listen to you, what is wrong with looking elsewhere? Don’t fire that person. VML should be ashamed for that one.

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