McCann Erickson

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McCann (before McCann - Erickson)
Industry Advertising, Marketing
Founded 1902 (1902) (Erickson)
1912 (1912) (H. K. McCann)
1930 (1930) (merger)
Headquarters U.S.
Parent Interpublic Group

McCann is a global advertising agency network, with offices in 120 countries. McCann is a subsidiary of the Interpublic Group of Companies, one of the four large holding companies in the advertising industry.[1]


McCann Erickson is part of McCann Worldgroup, which also includes planning and buying agency Universal McCann, direct/interactive web marketing agency MRM//McCann, experiential marketing agency Momentum Worldwide, healthcare marketing group McCann Healthcare Worldwide, branding firm FutureBrand, and public-relations and strategic-communications agency Weber Shandwick.[2] McCann Erickson was named "Global Agency of the Year" by Adweek in 1998, 1999, and 2000.[3]

In October of 2015, Alex Lubar was appointed CEO of McCann London. Lubar is the former New York-based global chief marketing officer.[4]

Notable campaigns[edit]

McCann Erickson created Coca-Cola's "It's The Real Thing" slogan and ad campaign, including the famous 1971 "Hilltop" ad, which featured the "I'd Like to Buy the World a Coke" jingle.[5] The song for the commercial was recorded by The New Seekers, and first aired as a radio ad before being made into a television commercial.[5] The song was rerecorded for commercial release as I'd Like to Teach the World to Sing (In Perfect Harmony). McCann Erickson also developed the "Army Strong" campaign for the United States Army. The company also developed the MasterCard commercial saying "There are some things money can't buy. For everything else, there's MasterCard",[6] as well as the Rice-a-Roni jingle (based on a 1923 song, "Barney Google").[7] McCann Erickson also developed the Gold Blend couple advertisements for Nescafé, which aired from 1987 and 1993.



  • 1902: Alfred Erickson forms his own advertising agency in New York City.
  • 1912: Harrison King McCann, along with four partners, launches H.K. McCann Co, and introduces the credo "Truth Well Told".
  • 1927: McCann opens offices in Paris, Berlin and London.
  • 1930: McCann and Erickson merge companies.
  • 1935: Latin American offices open in Buenos Aires and Rio de Janeiro.
  • 1957: McCann became the first U.S. advertising agency to bill $100 million in TV and radio sales.
  • 1959: Australian office opens, as well as European offices in Italy, Netherlands and Switzerland.
  • 1960: The company is organised into four independent operating units reporting into McCann Erickson, Inc. (later to become the Interpublic Group in 1961). Office opens in Japan.
  • 1964: The Spanish government of Francisco Franco hires the agency to improve its image in the United States.[8]
  • 1973: McCann International and McCann US reunite into the single agency McCann Erickson Worldwide.
  • 1997: McCann Worldgroup formed, includes: McCann Erickson Worldwide, Universal McCann and what would become MRM//McCann, Momentum, McCann Healthcare Worldwide, Weber Shandwick and FutureBrand.

In popular culture[edit]

In the AMC series Mad Men, an executive at McCann Erickson is introduced in Season 1 as showing great interest in poaching Don Draper away from Sterling Cooper. This attempt is ultimately unsuccessful but McCann would feature as a background adversary to Sterling Cooper for most of the series. Sterling Cooper and its parent company, Putnam, Powell and Lowe, are acquired by McCann, leading Don Draper to help start a new agency rather than be part of what he calls a "sausage factory."[9] Responding to the show, the ad company bought space in Adweek, Brandweek, and Mediaweek headlined "Welcome, Sterling Cooper" and signed "Your friends at McCann Erickson".[10] Later in the series,[11] Roger Sterling negotiates the sale of 51% of Sterling Cooper & Partners to McCann as an independent subsidiary, but McCann subsequently swallows up the company and consolidates it into its much larger business.[12]

Notable employees[edit]

Notable former employees include Theodor Seuss Geisel, best known to the world as Dr. Seuss, and President Ronald Reagan's brother, Neil Reagan, who was senior vice president of McCann Erickson. Homoerotic artist Tom of Finland started his work in the 1960s as an art director at the Finnish branch of the agency.[13][14]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Elliott, Stuart (September 2, 1997). "McCann-Erickson Wins Hotel Account". New York Times. 
  2. ^ O'Leary, Noreen (February 28, 2013). "Fast Chat: McCann Worldgroup's Luca Lindner Says advertising is about 'risk, tears and smiling'". Adweek. 
  3. ^ "McCannWorldGroup". McCann WorldGroup. 
  4. ^ Oster, Erik. "REVOLVING DOOR Alex Lubar Will Be McCann London’s New CEO". Ad Week. 
  5. ^ a b Chang, Jeff (21 October 2014). Who We Be: The Colorization of America. St. Martin's Press. ISBN 0312571291. Retrieved 19 May 2015. 
  6. ^ Elliott, Stuart (August 11, 2004). "MasterCard drops the names of major retailers into the print portion of its 'priceless' campaign". The New York Times. 
  7. ^ Finz, Stacy (July 16, 2006). "Rice-a-Redux: Once again it's the San Francisco treat". San Francisco Chronicle. 
  8. ^ Payne, S.G. The Franco Regime: 1936-1975. Madison: University of Wisconsin, 1987. p 530.
  9. ^ Edwards Jim (August 16, 2010). "Why Ad Agency McCann Can't Stop AMC's Mad Men From Bashing Its Good Name". CBS News. 
  10. ^ Elliott, Stuart (November 17, 2009). "McCann Responds to ‘Mad Men’". New York Times. 
  11. ^ In the Mad Men Season 7 episode "Waterloo" (May 25, 2014)
  12. ^ In the Mad Men Season 7 episode "Time & Life" (April 26, 2015)
  13. ^ Parekh, Rupal (March 29, 2010). "Value Of McCann's Industry Influence? Priceless". AdAge. 
  14. ^ Holloway, Lynette (December 13, 1996). "Neil Reagan, 88, Ad Executive And Jovial Brother of President". New York Times. 

External links[edit]