GM Moves Regional Business to Publicis Owned Martin Retail Group


General Motors recently announced that it will be moving the local portion of its Chevrolet media business to Publicis owned agency Martin Retail Group. Before moving to Martin Retail Group General Motors’s local Chevy media business was handled by the Dentsu owned agency Carat. According to Ad Week sources, the move happened several weeks ago. The move apparently happened without a formal review.

About Martin Retail Group

Martin Retail Group is an American advertising agency, it was founded in 1965 by David N. Martin and George Woltz.  It is based in Richmond, Virginia and is part of the Interpublic Group of Companies. In 1975 Martin and Woltz decided to divide the firm into two. Martin renamed his portion Martin Agency and it was independently owned until 1986.

It was acquired by Scali, McCabe and Sloves Advertising of New York. Scali was then acquired by Interpublic Group of Companies after it acquired Martin Retail Group.  Martin Retail Group specializes in automotive marketing solutions. Some of the agency’s notable clients include Buick, Cadillac and GMC. They have 8 offices and have about 295 employees.

  About Martin Retail Group’s New Position at Chevy

The agency will be handling the local portion of Chevy’s media business. They will handle the media planning and buying duties for Chevy’s regional dealers across the United States. This is a major win for the agency considering that Chevy is the company’s best-selling brand by a very significant margin. According to  Kantar Media, Chevy’s tier two and three dealer associations spending comes out to $430 million on U.S. paid media in 2017 and $283 million during the first nine months of 2018.

General Motors hasn’t stated why they decided to move from Carat to Martin Retail Group. The representative who made the announcement simply stated that they will be shifting their local media buying from Carat to Martin. The representative also noted that Carat will remain the brand’s global media agency of record for all its brands. Carat has handled the account since 2012 after a very competitive review.

No official statement was made about the brand’s overall marketing strategy but it is important to note that Chevy’s local business shift aligns with other key brands under the company. The agency is already handling local planning and buying work for GMC, Buick and Cadillac.


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