2 Dot.Coms Land in S.F.

Consumer Review Sites to Goodby, BigMouth
SAN FRANCISCO–Epinions.com, a new Web site that pays consumers for their opinions, has selected Goodby, Silverstein & Partners as its agency after a search, while a rival has chosen BigMouth Advertising.
“We have started strategic planning and are determining when we will conduct our launch effort,” said Epinions co-founder Mike Speiser.
Speiser declined to discuss the budget, but industry estimates peg annual billings at $20 million-plus. TV ads are expected to be a key part of the marketing mix.
Epinions picked the San Francisco agency because “they are totally focused on the consumer, and we’re impressed by their strategic thinking and creative strengths,” Speiser said.
The startup is in the midst of its second round of financing, and a preview of the site was unveiled two weeks ago. Touted as a shopping guide, it solicits and compiles reviews about products from its base of regular users, who are paid based on how many people click on their reviews.
Separately, ConsumerReview.com, tapped BigMouth, San Francisco, for its $5 million account after a three-month Bay Area search. The agency will roll out a print, outdoor and radio launch campaign in November in the top “wired” markets in the U.S. Founded by outdoor sports enthusiasts, the site offers consumer-generated evaluations of products in selected categories, according to company marketing director Greg Lee.
“Compared to other dot.com clients, we appreciated that this company wants to take enough time to do [its launch] right,” said Mark Whitty, agency president.
“We found this agency got straight to the point and quickly engaged us in intense discussions about our brand,” said Lee. “With such a small shop, we know we will have the ‘A’ team working on our launch,” he added.