FARMINGTON HILLS — Duffey Petrosky CEO Mark Petrosky today announced the launch of a new agency, Embark Digital, co-founded and led by president Mark Russell.
“Embark Digital was created to fuse strategic brand development with new and emerging communications channels that resonate with today’s consumers,” Petrosky said. “Russell’s deep experience in melding these disciplines and lead teams of business and creative professionals to develop marketing campaigns that engage, inform and entertain consumers are unmatched. His vision for Embark Digital is exciting and he’s building a talented team that is already working with an impressive list of national and regional clients.”
Russell described his team’s job as strategic digital storytellers.
“We bring our clients’ and their customers’ stories into the digital world in an experiential way,” he said. “We’re not thinking about pure technology but, rather, how we get our clients’ brands out there the right way.”
Petrosky said the digital world’s profound impact on marketing communications and growing interest among the firm’s current and prospective clients prompted Duffey Petrosky to form Embark Digital with experienced digital professionals aligned with his vision of superior client service.
“The Embark Digital team’s skill set is different than a traditional agency’s capabilities,” he said. “But what’s key for us is every person has the same set of values and arriving at the right answer for our clients using all communications tools available is all that matters.”
Today’s communications technologies put a company’s brand messages in front of consumers in ways that consumers want, but the messaging must still be relevant to them and based on strategic thinking, explained Russell. He emphasized the need to be selective.
“There are so many things companies can do in terms of social, digital and mobile technologies, but not all of these will work and produce the desired results for each client,” Russell said. “We focus them on what they should be doing from a strategic standpoint.”
Prior to founding Embark Digital with Petrosky in late 2012, Russell held the dual role of President of Wunderman Toronto and Managing Director of global digital agency Blast Radius’ central region, from 2010-12. As President, he managed the daily operations of Wunderman Toronto and served as the senior executive in the region for clients Ford, Microsoft Canada and Scotts, as well as led collaboration efforts between the two firms to optimize social and digital marketing programs for clients.
From 2007-10, Russell served as President of Wunderman Team Detroit and managed the firm’s relationships with Ford, Lincoln Mercury, Scotts, Brine, Warrior, Compuware, Shell, Ohio Art and Bosch. Earlier in his career, he was Senior Vice President and Managing Director of Carat Fusion in Boston and Dallas from 2005-2007.
“Unlike other digital firms, we want to partner with organizations for the long-term and provide a continuous stream of innovative ideas to help them effectively reach their customers and solve business challenges,” he said.
“Since opening our doors in January, Embark Digital has already been engaged by a number of Duffey Petrosky clients, such as Ally Automotive, St. John Providence Health System and Chrysler, as well as other organizations like the Chevrolet Detroit Belle Isle Grand Prix, who want to amplify their brands,” Russell said. “This is done through the delivery of the right combination of technology and content through emerging channels, as well as future technologies that will inevitably materialize,” he explained.
Embark Digital is located in the new Duffey Petrosky building in Farmington Hills. Combined, the two companies employ more than 100 people who are strategically located together to effectively share their expertise, integrate and collaborate on work for clients, Petrosky said. The two companies also share a studio at the original Duffey Petrosky building in Farmington Hills and are considering expansion in downtown Detroit.