Access Wins Intuit Corporate, B-to-B Account
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Access Wins Intuit Corporate, B-to-B Account

Access Communications has been selected to handle corporate and business-to-business public relations for accounting software leader Intuit.

Paul Holmes

SAN FRANCISCO—Access Communications has been selected to handle corporate and business-to-business public relations for accounting software leader Intuit. The firm won out over fellow-finalist A&R Public Relations for the account, which is believed to be worth close to $2 million, after Intuit and consultant Jerry Sweling looked at as many as 11 firms.
 
The account was formerly with Ketchum. Manning Selvage & Lee will continue to handle Intuit’s consumer public relations efforts, including PR for the company’s Quicken and TurboTax products.
 
According to Access president Susan Butenhoff, the firm will be working on corporate positioning and on promoting the software company’s products to small business. Although Intuit had sales of $1.26 billion last year, the company name is probably less well known than that of its most visible product, and its CEO, Stephen Bennett, has kept a low profile since joining from General Electric.
 
“Steve Bennett is bringing big business management practices to Silicon Valley, and that’s one of the stories we’ll be telling,” says Butenhoff.
 
She will also be helping Intuit position its small business software products in both vertical media and local media, both of which are well read by small business owners.
 
According to Intuit’s senior manager of corporate communications Toni Werner, Access was chosen because it had “great experience and great enthusiasm and energy. We felt it was a good cultural match for us. And they are very results-oriented.”
 
Sweling says the search effort focused primarily on midsize agencies. “A client of this size needs a certain critical mass, a certain reach, that a boutique firm couldn’t provide. On the other hand, Intuit didn’t want a giant multinational agency. This is really a domestic assignment, and they wanted the best creative thinking they could get as well as access to the firm’s most senior people.”
 
Butenhoff says she expects to spend about 25 percent of her time on the account, which she described as one of her agency’s largest. The corporate branding part of the assignment will be managed by Jennifer Fellner and the small business effort will be led by Matt Afflixio. Both are senior vice presidents.      
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