Customer experience agency MercerBell, part of the Publicis Groupe, has appointed Vaughan Townsend as Executive Creative Director, replacing agency founder and ECD David Bell.
An internationally acclaimed creative with comprehensive CX experience, Townsend has worked with global brands such as Land Rover, GSK, Ikea and Boots Chemists in his 20-plus year career in advertising. Set to join the MercerBell leadership team, he will partner closely with Brad Bennett, the agency’s executive strategy and data director.
Starting out in his home country of South Africa, Townsend relocated to the United Kingdom in 1999 to work at agencies including Craik Jones, Tequila and TBWA. He has held leadership roles more recently at M&C Saatchi, LIDA and Ogilvy London.
Townsend has received numerous international accolades across major creativity and effectiveness awards, ranging from D&AD and Cannes Lions to more data-driven award shows such as DMAs and John Caples, which recognise the use of data to elicit real, measurable actions from consumers.
Commenting on his new appointment, Townsend said: “It’s an incredible honour to be asked to help write the second chapter in MercerBell’s history.
“I’m particularly excited by the creative opportunities a true data-driven and behavioural science approach can bring to an impressive client roster. Julie and Brad are a formidable team, and I couldn’t think of a better time to join.”
MercerBell CEO Julie Dormand said: “Vaughan’s appointment followed a global search for a creative leader who will drive a progressive creative agenda for MercerBell.
“Townsend will help build the MercerBell creative product, driving engaging experiences driven by data and behavioural science principles.”
MercerBell executive strategy and data director Brad Bennett added: “Vaughan’s experience gives him a strong fusion of CRM, CX and brand knowledge.
“He is passionate about the central role data and behavioural science plays, not just in CRM, but in broader advertising and his experience aligns strongly with our direction as an agency.”