ANA acquires Word of Mouth Marketing Association

The Association of National Advertisers (ANA) is acquiring the Word of Mouth Marketing Association (WOMMA), a 13-year-old trade body that specializes in word of mouth and social media marketing.

Terms of the deal were not disclosed. According to ANA chief executive Bob Liodice, the acquisition will enhance the organization’s “already robust benefits portfolio” via additional professional development opportunities, webinars, conferences, local events and an awards program dedicated to word of mouth marketing.

“This is an important day for the ANA,” said Liodice in a statement. “Just as our previous acquisitions allowed us to increase member services in disciplines where we found ourselves wanting, this opportunity allows us to focus more on word of mouth marketing and social media than we’ve been able to do in the past. It’s a great boon for our members and a significant step in our evolution as a national trade organization dedicated to serving all facets of the marketing community.”

WOMMA bills itself as “the leader in ethical word of mouth marketing practices through its education, professional development, networking opportunities, and knowledge sharing with top industry marketers.” Spike Jones, vice president of strategy at Spredfast, serves as chair of the WOMMA board.

“All of us at WOMMA are thrilled to join the ranks of the ANA,” said Jones in a statement. “We’re extremely proud of what we’ve accomplished for the word of mouth industry in the research, ethics and influencer/advocacy spaces, and now the next evolution of WOMMA begins. Becoming a division of the ANA allows us to take full advantage of the resources, diverse member base and thought-leadership the ANA has carefully cultivated.”

The ANA, which represents more than 1,000 companies that collectively spend or support more than $400bn in marketing and advertising annually, has made a string of acquisitions in recent years to build out its offerings. Since 2014, the ANA has acquired both the Business Marketing Association and Brand Activation Association. In 2015, the Advertising Educational Foundation joined the ANA as its educational arm.

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Minda Smiley

Minda Smiley is a senior reporter at The Drum covering brands. During her time at The Drum, she has covered industry events including SXSW, ANA Masters of Marketing, 4A’s Transformation and C2 Montréal. She is a graduate of the City University of New York’s Graduate School of Journalism.

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