Publicis Groupe sets up ‘Team Lift’ for $200m Planet Fitness win in the US

After a battle against Dentsu, WPP and Omnicom, Publicis Groupe has won the $200 million Planet Fitness brief and assembled a “Team Lift” to take the strain.

It might sound like the latest instalment in the Marvel franchise, but it’s in fact the latest iteration of Publicis Groupe’s “Power of One” philosophy. Team Lift will handle marketing strategy, centralised data and analytics, media planning and buying, creative, and brand partnerships for the fitness franchise.

Planet Fitness claims to have 15 million members, mainly in the US but also in Canada, Mexico, Australia, Puerto Rico and Panama. This is the first time the business has consolidated national and local marketing into one agency.

Gyms may turn out to be the new replacement for the office water cooler: home working is apparently sending memberships soaring, particularly among the under 35s, many of whom lack space to work out at home. UK based Gym Group has seen memberships jump by one third since February, and is planning to open 40 new gyms by the end of next year, many of them in disused retail space.

Jeremy Tucker, chief marketing officer at Planet Fitness, said: “By centralising our marketing spend from 16 agencies to Publicis Groupe, we estimate delivering 20 percent more efficiency across our marketing spend, resulting in a minimum of $40 million in incremental media investment in the first year alone. Team Lift will enable us to deepen consumer engagement, introduce even more people to fitness, and ultimately enhance more lives with the power of the ‘Judgement Free Zone’.”

Dave Penski, CEO of Publicis Media U.S. and chairman of Publicis Media Exchange (PMX) Global, said: “There has never been a more important time to make a positive impact on consumers’ health and wellness. Publicis Groupe is thrilled to innovate alongside Planet Fitness to find new ways to connect with their broad and growing customer base.”

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About Emma Hall

Emma Hall is a journalist and editorial consultant and is the former Europe Editor of Ad Age, where she covered European marketing advertising, digital and media stories. She has written for newspapers including the Financial Times, The Guardian, The Times and the Telegraph, and was previously a section editor at Campaign. Emma started her career in New York as a researcher for a biography of Keith Richards.