IAR Bits and Bytes

Digitas Wins Barnes & Noble Work

New York-based book retail giant Barnes & Noble has awarded its strategic marketing account to Boston-based interactive shop Digitas.

The size of the account was not disclosed, though as Barnes & Noble’s agency of record for strategic marketing, Digitas is tasked with helping the retail chain integrate its in-store and online marketing efforts and “take [them] to the next level,” said Alan Kahn, chief operating officer at Barnes & Noble.

Kahn said the retailer picked Digitas for its expertise in multi-channel retail marketing and technology strategy.

“Digitas has a track record of working with major brand names to provide direct-to-customer marketing strategies,” he said.

Digitas will be servicing the Barnes & Noble account out of its New York office; chief creative officer and partner Steve Olderman will oversee the work.

Modem Media Cuts at Headquarters

True North-owned interactive shop Modem Media said it has cut an unspecified number of positions at its Norwalk, Conn. headquarters.

A spokesperson at the company said the staff cuts at the firm’s largest office were a “trial” to streamline some of its operations. According to the spokesperson, positions cut were largely duplicative, and would not affect the company’s overall skill set or focus.

Lance Names Web Shop

Snack food manufacturer Lance, Inc. tapped ettain to redesign its Web site and to promote its brand and products online.

Through the agreement, Charlotte, N.C.-based ettain will provide online branding strategy consulting, experience design, technology development and usability testing for the first phase of the project, expected to extend through the summer of 2001.

The appointment follows Lance’s new packaging rollout aimed at updating the image of its snack products, which includes “variety packs” of cheese and peanut butter crackers.

Ettain said it planned to incorporate the new packaging design into the new site, emphasizing brand consistency.

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