Klick's hiring tear rolls on with new MD from WPP, media exec from traditional shop

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Adding to its roster again, Klick Health snags new senior leadership as general manager and for its media practice. (Alpha Stock Images)

Klick Health continues to stack up new talent. Its latest hire is Daniel Drexler from WPP’s The Neighborhood agency created initially for anchor client Johnson & Johnson.

Drexler joins Klick as managing director, just weeks after top media and marketing exec Dave Leitner, a veteran of MDC Partners and Mediavest, stepped in as senior VP of media. Both men signed after Klick named Rich Levy chief creative director in May. The creative health veteran helmed FCB Health’s creative efforts for almost 10 years.

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Klick’s ambitious poaching of other agencies’ talent tracks right along with its evolution as an independent agency. Klick has racked up a growing list of kudos, including a Best Places to Work nod from Ad Age this year, its first Cannes Lions Health creativity awards and double-digit growth over the past several years.

And meanwhile, the entrepreneurial shop continues its push, detailed in FiercePharma three years ago, to create its own model ad agency of the future built on its heritage of data and innovation.

“It’s quite rare to see a company make big promises and deliver consistently on each and every one of them,” Drexler said.

The not-so-typical pharma and healthcare agency hosts confabs with speakers such as former First Lady Michelle Obama or former President Bill Clinton, creates new technology—such as empathy machines for Parkinson’s patients—in its innovation labs and consistently delivers entertaining employee holiday videos that rate million-plus clicks on YouTube.

On Drexler's hire and Klick's progress, President Lori Grant said “We’re on this incredible path of momentum. Dan’s expertise and approach to business very much fits with the desires of Klick and the growth trajectory we’re on.”

Media chief Leitner joined Klick after 25 years at traditional media companies, and, like Drexler and Levy, is enthusiastic about the agency’s independent spirit. But he also explained the general appeal of moving into the health industry from more generalized work.

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"The healthcare space is entering into a renaissance period as healthcare expands to a new world of products, services and devices based on technology and changes to government regulations," Leitner said via email. "[B]ecause pharma has always worked within a framework of strict regulations that limit the use of data, in an odd twist, pharma marketers, in some ways, may be more prepared to work within the recent data privacy laws ... than other marketing categories."