Internet practice taps two firms for dual market work

ARLINGTON, MA: Internet start-up Beansprout Networks has tapped two firms with just about nothing in common - PR giant Edelman and solo practitioner Barry Wanger of Wanger Associates - for its PR needs.

ARLINGTON, MA: Internet start-up Beansprout Networks has tapped two firms with just about nothing in common ? PR giant Edelman and solo practitioner Barry Wanger of Wanger Associates ? for its PR needs.

Beansprout, a privately held company founded in 1997, has taken on the two agencies in preparation for its national web site rollout later this year, which will link parents to their pediatricians and childcare providers online.

The company declined to disclose the overall program budget, although Beansprout CEO James Chung described it as 'among the top 10% of what you'll see from Internet ventures' and well over dollars 20,000 per month.

Both agencies will develop full communications programs, including media relations and speaker placement, and there may also be event marketing and IR aspects. Edelman's Chicago healthcare group is scheduled to handle the pediatrics component of the business, while Wanger will focus on the childcare division.

'Because we serve two very different markets, it was advantageous to get two firms that specialize in those areas,' said Chung. 'No firm understood the intricacies of both fields, but they independently understand their markets better than anyone else.'

While Chung admits that hiring two separate PR agencies is costlier, he said it's an investment that will likely pay off. He also said the choice of the two agencies mirrors the market: Internet healthcare demands a large firm and childcare/work/family is typically handled by smaller ones.

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