One Small Step Collective launches data business Ground Control, led by former DAN data boss Phil Zohrab

One Small Step Collective has launched a new data and analytics business, Ground Control, which the business says will extend its existing predictive media offering.

Former Dentsu Aegis Network chief data officer, Phil Zohrab, will head up the business, which will partner Pi Datametrics for search analytics, Sparkline’s Analytics Auditor, and semantic audience profiling company Semasio.

Zohrab joins from Dentsu

“Data has always been a core part of the success of OSSC and we are finding more and more clients asking for help building out the data side of their business to drive decision making,” said OSSC managing director, John Williams.

“Bringing someone of Phil’s calibre and experience shows our commitment to helping clients in this space.”

OSSC added that Ground Control is built around three pillars: understanding, optimisation and prediction. So far, interested clients want to use internal and external data to “gain a deep understanding of consumer behaviour and how this is changing in the current climate, as well as how to reallocate media budgets when businesses return to the new normal media environment”.

Zohrab, who spent six years at Dentsu, including three in the chief data officer role, explained that starting Ground Control in the middle of COVID-19 makes sense because clients are using the time to “optimise and reframe”.

“I love that OSSC is a creative agency deeply into data and technology, tying it into creating real business insights and strategic opportunities. This was a chance to marry creative, media and data DNA into a new business that can take that even further,” he explained.

“We’ve partnered with world leading data and insights platforms to give clients incredible understanding into their business and their category. It seems ridiculous to start a company in the middle of a pandemic, but data has never been more relevant than what it is today.

“We are seeing a lot of clients using this time to optimise and reframe their business, making sure that they are in the best possible position when the pandemic lifts.”


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