EarthLink Fires Leo Burnett, Seeks New Creative Shop

CHICAGO Atlanta-based EarthLink has parted with Publicis’ Leo Burnett and will seek a new agency to handle its creative chores, sources said. The shop’s contract with the client expired last month, sources said. In a statement, the agency attributed the move to management changes at the client and transitions following Burnett’s absorption of EarthLink shop LB Works in December. EarthLink spent about $100 million on advertising last year, according to Nielsen Monitor-Plus. Sources said the incumbent media agency, independent Horizon Media in New York, remains on the roster. The client declined comment.

Timberland Contacts About 6 Shops for Chemistry Checks

BOSTON Footwear and outdoor apparel company Timberland is holding chemistry checks with about six agencies as it looks for a shop to handle creative projects following its split with the three-year incumbent, Publicis’ Fallon, sources said. Among the shops are independent McCarthy Mambro Bertino and Havas’ Arnold, both in Boston, and WPP’s Berlin Cameron/Red Cell in New York. The client tapped Select Resources International in Santa Monica, Calif., to develop a list of potential contenders but is handling the rest of the process on its own, sources said. A cut to two or three finalists will be made this month, with a decision due in April. Timberland, which spent $10 million on ads last year, according to Nielsen Monitor-Plus, could not be reached.

Corona Extra Returns to The Beach in TV Campaign

LOS ANGELES Corona Extra this week will launch a six-spot TV campaign, backed by a $35 million budget, that continues to use the brand’s “Miles away from ordinary” tagline. Cramer-Krasselt in Chicago handles. “Spin the Bottle” shows beach patrons playing the game, but instead of a kiss, the winner picks who must run across hot sand to grab more Coronas. “Squirt” shows a guy gazing too long at an attractive passerby. In retaliation, his girlfriend grabs the lime from his beer and squirts him.

DDB’s Cotton Goes Bi-Coastal As Aspect Group President

LOS ANGELES Tom Cotton, president of DDB Integrated Solutions Group North America, was named president of Santa Monica, Calif.-based entertainment-marketing shop The Aspect Group. Cotton, whose 25-year career includes stints at J. Walter Thompson, FCB and Bates as well as DDB, will open a New York office for Aspect later this month and split his time between coasts. Aspect has worked on branded-entertainment efforts for Ford, Coca-Cola and Nextel, among others.

‘Queer Eye’ Designer Debuts in Pier 1 Work This Week

LOS ANGELES Pier 1 Imports this week breaks its first campaign with Queer Eye for the Straight Guy designer Thom Filicia. The effort, from IPG’s Campbell-Ewald in Warren, Mich., and Santa Monica, Calif., includes two TV spots. According to sources, one ad features Filicia showing a young woman how her taste in clothing can be reflected in her decorating style. In the other spot, Filicia acts as therapist, showing a young married couple that the pair can agree on Pier 1. The tagline remains, “Get in touch with your senses.” Filicia replaces spokeswoman Kirstie Alley. Print ads are expected to follow next month. Pier 1 spent $60 million on advertising in 2003, according to Nielsen Monitor-Plus. Client and agency officials could not be reached.

Secret Weapon Takes Ikea’s $4 Mil. L.A. Account From CP+B

LOS ANGELES Secret Weapon Marketing in Santa Monica, Calif., has won creative duties for Ikea North America’s estimated $4 million Los Angeles market business without a review, the client said. The Los Angeles business had been with MDC’s Crispin Porter + Bogusky in Miami. That shop, which also has an office in Venice, Calif., retains Ikea’s national account. An Ikea representative said it has assigned CP+B to handle new markets, including Minneapolis; New Haven, Conn.; Philadelphia; and Tempe, Ariz. The rep said the Los Angeles market required special attention because it has four stores clustered in one area. Ikea spent $40 million on advertising overall in the U.S. in 2003, according to Nielsen Monitor-Plus.