NEW HAVEN, CT: R.C. Bigelow, a tea manufacturer, has hired Mason, Inc. as AOR.
The agency will handle media relations, event management, and product launch strategy, as well as promote the company's Charleston Tea Plantation, which will be open for visitor tours in 2006.
Mason president Fran Onofrio noted that the agency would focus its energies on pitching consumer magazines.
Messages will promote the health benefits of tea, showcase Bigelow's new white tea product, and highlight its organic offerings.
Bigelow is also celebrating its 60th anniversary this year.
"The trend is that tea is becoming more popular," Onofrio said. "We want to make sure Bigelow is still well-positioned in the marketplace."
The agency has also begun preparing for the public unveiling of the plantation, which the company's claims to be the only working tea plantation in the US. Bigelow purchased the plantation and American Classic, the tea brand made from the plantation's leaves, in April 2003.
Mason has begun pitching long-lead and local publications, and is making the plantation's tea tester available to the media as an expert.
The plantation will open to the public in May - after a January soft launch - and hopes to attract many outlets and tea enthusiasts for its grand opening event.