M Strategies Inc. and Cartel Team up

San Antonio-based Cartel Creativo, Inc and Dallas-based m strategies inc. (MSI) have entered into a strategic partnership that combines the advertising and brand marketing experience of The Cartel and the public relations and media strategy experience of MSI.

The two agencies currently collaborate on the Church’s Chicken and Texas Chicken account, a partnership that the client says has increased sales revenues.

The partnership maintains that the one-stop shop they have created is a strong model in a down economy as client’s can make the most of their budgets by dealing with one entity:

“Companies are reorganizing, cutting staff and slicing budgets because of the frayed economy and uncertain markets,” says L. Michelle Smith, CEO of m strategies inc.  “In our experience, marketing, advertising and public relations are areas that are impacted first by budget cuts. In times like these, companies are looking for value—how to maximize their communications spend.”

Smith adds that an alliance like MSI/Cartel allows for one-stop shopping for a complete integrated marketing program, whether for the general market or for multicultural segments, which gives companies the ability to save on the time and money it takes to manage multiple agencies and the multiple out-of-pocket expenses and mark-ups they may incur by having multiple agencies. 

Sean Salas, president of The Cartel Group, says that the down economy has affected all ad-categories across the board: “The truth of the matter is that the status of today's economy is affecting all Hispanic advertising and marketing budgets, not just a few categories,” says Salas. “The whole industry is struggling, and this can be best seen in the fewer number of new business opportunities when compared to previous years. It is also important to note this is best time for marketers to continue to invest in advertising, as studies show that speaking to consumers, even during these times, will build consumer brand loyalty.” This necessity to maintain advertising even in down times was one that was emphasized at Portada’s Second Annual Digital and Print Media Conference by Spencer Ewald, President of NxtBook Media: "What we've seen in the past is that once economic conditions improve, those brands that maintained their ad-investment during the slowdown usually came out ahead of those that did not."

Speaking to which other clients the partnership is pursuing, Smith and Salas told Portada:  “We are in discussions with the Extended Warranty Group (EWG) out of Chicago about a Latina-market public relations strategy.  MSI is agency of record for EWG and is handling the launch of their first online product, AllSixWarranty.com which bundles extended warranties for six major appliances for one low monthly cost. In addition to EWG and Church’s, Cartel currently works on Hispanic advertising for Williamson-Dickies.  Some notable clients that we have worked on Latino initiatives with include US Army, JCPenney, Dr Pepper, and Cerveza Tecate.”


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