DENVER, CO: Atkins Nutritionals Inc. tapped Minnesota-based Kohnstamm PR to serve as its new AOR, after a three-round review.
The RFP was handled internally and began November 16. Four firms were invited to pitch, including finalist CRT Tanaka, Atkins AOR since 2005.
Starting Feb. 1, Kohnstamm began focusing on the company's rebranding initiative through media relations, management, and influencer work. Its first campaign will begin in early June.Atkins Nutritional filed for bankruptcy in 2005, but returned to the marketplace in 2006. In September 2007, the North Castle Group acquired the controlling interest in the company and began to rebrand.
According to Collette Heimowitz, Atkins VP of Nutrition Communications and Education, “Now that business has been straightened out, we will reposition [the brand], and with Kohnstamm's help, regain the notoriety and respect we once had,” with repackaging, a new spokesperson, a Web site relaunch, a new diet book, and scientific advisory board of university-affiliated, medical doctors, food scientists, and other experts.
Kohnstamm has focused on food and nutrition since 1998. In addition, it worked with Atkins CEO Monty Sharma on a Naked Juice account three years ago when he was CEO and EAS of Naked Lunch.
“We chose Kohnstamm, because we appreciated that they were a smaller firm, with a nutritionist on staff [account director Trish Scorpio worked for the American Dietetic Association],"Heimowitz said. "In particular, they understood the credibility of Atkins, how it has been misaligned, and what needs to be done to regain credibility."Josh Kohnstamm, Kohnstamm CEO, said his firm will work to better explain the Atkins message.
“The new initiatives are really about getting out facts and attributes of what [the brand] is really about," he said. "Eating all bacon and loading up on fatty foods is just not representative, and that will be part of our challenge.”