Marketing agency Vovia enjoys international growth in challenging times

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After a busy year, despite the pandemic hitting so many media and creative companies, Vovia has expanded its leadership team to work with its growing list of clients.

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Susan Murphy, President of Vovia since joining the performance-focused media agency founded by Cameron Prockiw in 2014, says: “2021 was our biggest year for new client growth, largely from companies serving agencies with e-commerce and performance marketing were looking for media skills.”

As a result, Vice President of Customer Service Heather Isley, who is celebrating her 11thth year at Vovia, has been appointed Senior Vice President of Strategy. Over the past two decades, she has honed her media and strategy skills in both B2B and B2C, working across a range of industries including finance, education, technology and e-commerce. Isley’s previous position was given to newly hired Tracy Gonzalez.

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Gonzalez may be a recent addition to Vovia, but Murphy knows her strengths well. When Murphy was at Venture Communications, she hired Gonzalez to help her as her customer service manager.

Since then she has accumulated 20 years of marketing experience on both agency and client sides, leading marketing initiatives for a variety of top companies including Nike, Unilever, Coca-Cola, Proctor and Gamble and Kraft.

Most recently, Gonzalez was Vice President, General Manager and Western Canada Director of the Toronto-based independent agency Rain, which acquired Calgary-based agency Karo.

“I have worked with Tracy over the years and have been very impressed with her leadership style, client partnerships she nurtures and her strategic focus,” says Murphy. “She is a great fit and an essential hire for the next chapter of Vovia’s strategic growth.”

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From its 10,000 square foot facility in Mount Royal Village, this growth is built on a foundation of data advancement and innovation that consistently drives results for clients.

Vovia has been successful in expanding its customer list to Mexico and the United States over the past year

Encanto Group, a manufacturer and retailer of home furnishings, hired the Calgary agency to launch their e-commerce and media program. In the US, the Calgary-based company handles all national e-commerce campaigns for Cleverman, a supplier of men’s grooming products.

Murphy and her 30 employees continue to oversee a strong portfolio here and win new local clients.

They have enjoyed a long association with Calgary Co-op as their media agency for many years. Vovia was responsible for integrated media strategy and execution for the launch of Co-op’s successful own brand Cal & Gary, which was locally sourced and achieved a high brand recall rate of 85 percent. It is currently doing media planning and buying for the Co-op’s new Make Today Delicious campaign and is working with Calgary’s Daughter Creative, who is responsible for all creative work.

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Another local company that Vovia is proud of is Edo Japan. Founded in Calgary more than 40 years ago, the company has grown to 140 locations across Canada and is backed by Vovia’s expertise in media planning, buying and execution.

Recent on-site additions include being the digital media partner of Lammle’s Western Wear and being awarded media planning and buying for the new Calgary Cancer Center.

Murphy is proud of the full range of services Vovia offers and being recognized by Google as a certified Premier Partner; a notable award given to the top-performing three percent of Google’s partners in Canada and one of the few Canadian media agencies on Google’s Executive Agency Council.

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It’s nice to see that face-to-face events are taking place again. One thing to look forward to is the 2022 Distinguished Business Leader Award Gala. The 30thth The anniversary of the award, co-presented by the Haskayne School of Business and the Calgary Chamber, will be held on June 23 at the Hyatt Regency Hotel – and tickets are on sale now. Celebrated recipients this year are Wayne Chiu, Founder and CEO of Trico and Founder of the Trico Foundation, and Andrea Robertson, President and CEO of STARS. They will both share their personal insights and stories about ethical leadership in our community.

David Parker appears regularly in the Herald. Read his columns online at calgaryherald.com/business. He can be reached at 403-830-4622 or email [email protected]

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