Hot Shop

A little agency named Chili Pepper is making a big name for itself in the dot.com world.
The 2-year-old Boston shop has launched local startups Streamline.com and Essential.com, and recently was named the first agency of record for SoftLock.com.
“It was really important for us to select a firm that has that kind of [dot.com] experience,” said Leila Dillon, marketing director at the Maynard, Mass., client.
The 17-person agency bested shops more than twice its size, including finalist Partners
& Simons, Boston. “It was definitely a good feeling to beat one of the big guys,” said Chili Pepper account supervisor Judith Dinkelspiel, who left Arnold Communications unit Wickersham Hunt Schwantner & Partners in August to join Chili Pepper.
Billings for SoftLock.com are expected to be at least $2 million, she said.
Seven-year-old SoftLock.com secures and sells content on the Web. Chili Pepper will launch an interactive, print and direct mail campaign in late spring that targets consumers, Web sites (which provide links to the content, such as research reports) and publishers (which pay SoftLock.com a commission for selling their content).
–Lauren Wiley