Independent Butler, Shine, Stern & Partners in Sausalito, Calif., is in advanced negotiations to handle creative chores on AT&T's YellowPages.com account following a review, per sources.
The competition ultimately came down to Butler, Shine an Mother, an independent agency in New York, sources said. Along with those two shops, MDC Partners' Crispin Porter + Bogusky in Miami and indie Venables Bell & Partners in San Francisco, were finalists. Crispin and Venables withdrew before final presentations, said sources.
Past major media spending on the brand has hovered around $20 million annually, though the total dipped to about $1 million in 2009, according to Nielsen.
This year, however, the brand may spend as much as $50 million to tout a relaunch of the Web search site, said a source. The winning agency will develop a campaign designed to get consumers to use the site more and for different reasons, the source added.
Media duties were not part of the review and remain at WPP Group's Mediaedge:cia in New York.
The incumbent, Omnicom Group's GSD&M Idea City in Austin, Texas, opted not to defend. GSD&M, which has handled creative duties on the brand since 2005, declined to comment. The shop's most recent work used the tagline, "Need something?"
The review was managed by New York consultancy Source Martin, which did not return calls.