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Ruder Finn Acquires RLA Collective to Expand Integrated Marketing and Analytics Expertise

by | Aug 1, 2018

Ruder Finn announced that it has acquired RLA Collective, a sales-driven integrated marketing agency specializing in health and wellness, including over-the-counter (OTC), nutritional supplement and medical device brands in North America.

With more than two decades in the consumer and pet health sectors, RLA has developed and executed customized marketing campaigns—that blend the latest in digital advertising technologies with traditional tactics—for new and heritage brands sold at major drug, mass market and online retailers, including Amazon and brand-owned e-commerce. The acquisition will further enhance Ruder Finn’s established, decades-long foundation in the health industry.

“Ruder Finn has a deep heritage and renowned reputation in its healthcare expertise – from establishing franchise positions for companies to launching ground-breaking brands, to changing the way healthcare businesses approach and change cultures,” says Kathy Bloomgarden, CEO of Ruder Finn. “The acquisition of RLA Collective will enhance our integrated healthcare marketing offerings, utilizing the latest in digital marketing technologies to reach niche health consumers.”

RLA Collective specializes in end-to-end product marketing, from research and strategic competitive positioning, to creative content development and execution of key brand engagement strategies, such as social media marketing, micro-influencers, geo-targeted retailer campaigns and AI digital advertising that can be measured against real-time sales data. RLA Collective has worked with heritage OTC and supplement name brands, such as Cold-Eeze, Curad, PediaCare, Sea-Band and Viactiv to Oxy Acne, ROHTO, Vagisil, Balmex and Cepacol, as well as many new brand introductions.

Robin Russo, Founder, CEO and Partner, and Alyson O’Mahoney, President and Partner, at RLA Collective will remain on staff as co-Managing Directors at Ruder Finn. RLA will bring a team of 11 people (including Russo and O’Mahoney) to Ruder Finn, and a wealth of OTC industry contacts, including those in the retail trade industry.

RLA Collective will continue to be based in Pleasantville, NY, but will also have space in Ruder Finn’s New York office. They will use the name RLA Collective, a Ruder Finn Company.

“RLA has incubated some of the latest technologies and platforms for optimized OTC brand marketing that can be tied to sales,” says Russo. “We are thrilled to bring our deep understanding of and success in marketing OTC products, including, FDA/FTC/HIPPA-compliant, sales-driven marketing strategies to Ruder Finn, with its many advanced resources and prestigious global healthcare client roster and expertise. We are looking forward to doing great things together.”

Last year, Ruder Finn announced a new healthtech specialty practice, as well as BEACON, a proprietary analytics tool that combines real-time social listening with real-world data. This new announcement further enhances Ruder Finn’s growth in both the healthcare and technology/digital space.

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