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Amazon Reviews Media Account

Incumbents Are Mindshare and MEC

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Amazon is conducting a media-agency review, Ad Age has learned.

WPP's Mindshare handles the e-tail giant's offline media work and sibling agency MEC supports digital media. Interpublic's Mullen handles media buying and planning for the company's Zappos megabrand. It's unclear whether or not this review affects the digital business or the separate Zappos account.

In addition to incumbent Mindshare, shops invited to participate in the review include Interpublic Group's Initiative, Publicis Groupe's Zenith and Mindshare sister agency MediaCom. Consulting firm Accenture, which sent the RFP to agencies, is supporting the review, according to an executive familiar with the matter. Media duties will span various markets, including the United States.

Amazon and its agencies couldn't be reached for comment by press time.

According to Kantar Media, the Seattle-based company and its Zappos.com and Quidsi brands spent $298.8 million on U.S. measured media in 2012.

In 2011, it spent $777.6 million on total U.S. advertising, including measured and unmeasured spending, according to the Ad Age DataCenter. The DataCenter also reported an uptick in measured-media spending in 2011 from $161.7 million in 2010 to $199.5 million. Zappos accounted for about $32 million of that spending. While the largest chunk of Amazon's budget in 2011 went to network TV -- $68.7 million -- the company also spent $54.1 million on magazine buys, as well as $30.9 million on display ads. Unmeasured spending accounted for $578 million of the company's total marketing budget.

With competition heating up on the e-reader, tablet and digital marketing fronts, Amazon, which owns Kindle, acquired book-sharing social-media platform Goodreads.

Fashion e-tail is another marketing focus for the company, which this week announced its first TV ad campaign touting its fashion offerings. Cathy Beaudoin, president of Amazon Fashion, told Women's Wear Daily that the company hopes a TV campaign will create greater awareness of Amazon.com's fashion editorial content and brands. The outlet reported: "The overall campaign spans TV, print, outdoor, online display and social platforms and ties back to a 'really immersive site experience,' she said."

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