Interactive Media Corp. last week selected BBDO Response to handle its estimated $15-20 million direct marketing account, the client confirmed.
The Toronto agency was selected following a review that also involved Grey Direct in New York and MacLaren McCann in Toronto as finalists, sources said. Grey handles media buying for the electronic personal ad service.
"There was a great culture fit," said an Interactive Media Corp. representative of the winning agency's hire. "Their creative talent blew us away and they are whizzes at strategic planning."
BBDO Response is the first agency the Toronto-based company has retained to create ads. Previously, advertising campaigns have been crafted in-house and have predominantly featured testimonials from satisfied customers.
The client representative would not say how BBDO Response's work would depart from past efforts or when a new campaign would be launched.
Morgan, Anderson & Co. here served as the consultant during the pitch process. Initially, about 10 agencies in the U.S. and Canada were invited to participate in the review.
Users of Interactive Media Corp.'s services can meet either by telephone or via the Internet.
The company has a Web site at www.webpersonals.com, where interested parties can read or place ads for free. The service is also free for those placing or listening to ads via the telephone. The company charges those who respond to an ad or those who contact others to chat.