Flock and Rally, the full-service, women-owned creative agency based in Columbia, South Carolina, has promoted Merritt McNeely from VP of marketing to the role of executive vice president (EVP). In addition to leading the agency’s marketing and advertising operations, McNeely’s role has expanded to include management of the company. View her bio: https://www.flockandrally.com/merritt-mcneely.
“Merritt is an absolute dynamo,” says Tracie Broom, co-founding partner and chief strategy officer at Flock and Rally. “She is a compassionate, effective manager of creative people, and she is a resourceful mastermind herself. Her acumen for advertising strategy, her vast network of relationships, and her elevation of our agency’s buying power enable our clients to enjoy exceptional ad placements and pricing across traditional and digital advertising networks locally, across South Carolina and nationwide.”
With eight full-time staff and a network of contractors, Flock and Rally serves a diverse set of clients in sectors including business, education, nonprofit, government, transportation, tourism, commercial real estate, economic development and technology. Clients are drawn to the agency for its extensive service offerings, strong relationships, responsiveness, flexibility and high-impact campaigns. The firm is celebrating its 10-year anniversary in 2020 and is nearing the end of a renovation of its Arsenal Hill office building.
“We’re very excited about the ongoing growth of our firm, ” says Debi Schadel, co-founding partner and chief operations officer at Flock and Rally. “Promoting Merritt to EVP allows her to combine her broad experience in marketing and communications with her instinctive leadership skills, enabling her to lead the Flock and Rally team with knowledge and empathy.”
Since Flock and Rally began serving as The COMET’s marketing and advertising agency in Summer 2019, McNeely has managed a variety of complex, large-scale projects for the regional transit agency, from TV commercial production to the recent campaign to celebrate civil rights icon Sarah Mae Flemming.
“We have grown as a firm in areas that are personally exciting to me because of the experiences I have had in my career, ” notes McNeely. “In particular, we have increased our buys of traditional media for major local entities, and we’ve rolled out a wide variety of state-of-the-art digital advertising services across national ad networks for our clients, which allows us to craft truly custom solutions for each of them.”
McNeely has managed Flock and Rally’s marketing, communications and advertising work for the South Carolina State Fair since early 2019, working closely with the client team to produce remarkable increases in stats such as an 82% jump in advance ticket sales in 2019. McNeely also works with the marketing team at Columbia Metropolitan Airport (CAE) to place traditional advertising, and she directs media buying for a variety of other clients across the state and beyond.
“I am really proud of the work we have been able to produce with our clients since I joined the firm two years ago,” notes McNeely. “I am excited that my role is expanding to not only manage client projects but to also oversee and manage our talented staff and company matters as we continue to grow.”
McNeely joined Flock and Rally in April 2018 after serving for five years as marketing director at the South Carolina State Museum, prior to which she served for eight years as the executive director of the Five Points Association. She has served on numerous boards and committees across the Midlands. She recently rotated out of a long tenure on the board of the Congaree Vista Guild, where she served as board president and guided the merchants’ association through a number of key initiatives, including updating the organization’s bylaws, opening voting to Vista Guild members and expanding board diversity. In the past, she has served on the boards of the Columbia Design League, the Animal Mission and the Babcock Center Foundation.
McNeely is a recipient of the State Media Company’s “20 Under 40,” Columbia Regional Business Report’s “Women of Influence” and Columbia Business Monthly’s “50 Most Influential” honors. Since she joined Flock and Rally, she has led multiple award-winning projects, garnering honors such as two Silver ADDY Awards from AAF of the Midlands for the 2019 South Carolina State Fair campaign, as well as IABC-SC Palmetto Awards of Excellence for projects such as the S.C. Asphalt Pavement Association’s Asphalt Works! workforce development campaign and the South Carolina Coalition Against Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault’s Realationships101 digital marketing campaign for teens and young adults. McNeely and the team also have been honored with numerous SCPRSA Mercury Awards, including the 2019 Best in Show Silver Wing Award for audience research and brand strategy for Richland Library Friends and Foundation.
Flock and Rally is a full-service creative agency that develops new brands, launches major campaigns and manages integrated communications and marketing for clients across the state, along the Eastern Seaboard and beyond. View the firm’s work, team and more at https://www.flockandrally.com/.
About Flock and Rally: Integrated Communications & Marketing
Founded in 2010, Flock and Rally is a full-service, women-owned creative agency based in Columbia, South Carolina. The firm integrates branding, public relations, marketing, traditional advertising, digital advertising, social media and more into campaigns for a diverse base of clients, ranging from regional nonprofits to large-scale businesses across South Carolina and beyond. Serving industry sectors ranging from lifestyle and tourism to business, technology, real estate, economic development and more, Flock and Rally’s mission is to rally the community around great ideas. Learn more at www.flockandrally.com.