NEW YORK—Internet retailer Amazon.com has named Burson-Marsteller its lead agency, replacing Golin/Harris International, after a search that included nine other firms, including multinationals and independent creative boutiques. The company is also working with MWW/Savitt president Kathy Savitt on a consulting basis.
BM was appointed in the fall of 2002, and handled public relations for Amazon during the all important holiday season. According to Amazon director of public relations William Curry, “As a retailer that season is critical for us, and we got them up and working right away.”
Amazon’s holiday season public relations activities included the return of its “Delight-O-Meter,” which tracks the approximate number of items ordered from Amazon.com domains worldwide. Overall the company sold more than 56 million items worldwide over a two-month period.
Amazon also became the first retailer to sell the Segway human transport system (also a B-M client), allowing consumers to pre-order from the site for delivery this summer. Customers could also enter a competition to receive their Segway before Christmas.
Burson-Marsteller was selected because “we liked their thinking and we liked the fact that they were able to put together a great team of people from across their network, as opposed to just a single office,” says Curry.
MWW’s Savitt, meanwhile, has been retained for “strategic leadership and senior consulting as we develop a truly global public relations process,” says Curry. Adds Savitt, “I do a lot of consulting assignments focused on organizational management and strategic planning, and I will be doing something similar with Amazon.”