Advertising Exec Looks To Remake Retail Agency

By Nicole Norfleet
Star Tribune (Minneapolis)

WWR Article Summary (tl;dr) Q&A with Lynne Roberston, a leading woman in the Minneapolis business community who is making her mark in advertising. Just this past year, her firm, which she just bought a year ago, added 11 clients to the roster.


Lynne Robertson is famous. At a time when many advertising agencies have consolidated, she bucked the trend when she purchased the Minneapolis retail agency Fame, which she had been leading, from its owner, the Omnicom Group holding company.

A year later, Robertson said she has no regrets as she remakes the firm. She expanded its client base and recently relocated to a new office.

The 20-person agency added 11 clients this past year, including retailers, restaurants and health care businesses. “I’m really delighted that we have been able to continue to attract good business and that we continued to build our talent pool,” she said. “I didn’t think we wouldn’t, but you never know. You step off that precipice, and it’s a leap of faith.”

Q: How did you decide to purchase Fame?

A: It almost took 2 1/2 years from sort of deciding that I wanted to do that and negotiating and getting it to fruition. That’s almost illustrative of what the problem is at least in that structure for us. This is too much time. You have to be more nimble than that. I just didn’t see our ability to thrive and grow because of the constructs. It requires financial payback. It requires contracts and affiliations and associations that we’re bound to because of the corporate structure. It wasn’t really keeping with how we work. We work in the retail space, and it requires you to be really quick and nimble and smart.

Q: Looking back over the last year, how have you been able to reinvest in the company?

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