HOB.com Postpones Ad Launch

House of Blues Entertainment is postponing the launch of its HOB.com branding campaign, client executives announced last week.
TBWA\Chiat\Day, Playa del Rey, Calif., won the $20 million project in April over Rubin Postaer and Associates, Santa Monica, Calif.
The HOB.com site was due to launch this summer, but was delayed following a thwarted initial public offering, said Chris Stephenson, svp of marketing for House of Blues Entertainment, Hollywood, Calif. Executives said it could launch by January.
“It’s really too early to say whether we’re going to back out or not. But with the uncertain market conditions, we didn’t think this was the most opportune time to move forward,” Stephenson said.
“People [at the client] who are working on [HOB.com] are definitely looking for jobs and have been told the account is on long-term hiatus,” a source said.
Still, Stephenson said House of Blues’ strong offline business will continue to feed HOB.com. “Don’t confuse us with a dot-com. … When we go public, we will be assessed as an offline brand.”
Duffy Smith, TBWA\C\D group account director for the HOB.com account, said the agency expects to resume working on the account in September.
At present, TBWA\C\D has only completed some collateral work worth about $1 million in fees, Stephenson said. In July, the agency will launch an online/offline promotional campaign dubbed “Run of the House.” K