Cake to promote HMV social networking site

Troubled high-street music chain HMV has brought in digital agency Cake to promote its attempts to compete in the social networking market currently dominated by MySpace, Bebo and Facebook.

HMV: site to launch later in the year
HMV: site to launch later in the year

HMV is launching its own social networking site later this year, allowing users to interact and to share their favourite films and music.

Cake has been briefed to promote the project, handle media relations and create content by liaising with film studios and record labels. The digital agency will also be responsible for recruiting users by targeting members of existing online communities that have demonstrated an interest in film and music.

‘We seek to replicate online the social space that record stores have long represented in the high street,’ said HMV e-commerce director Gideon Lask. Cake described the site, currently in development, as ‘a bit like Facebook and MySpace’.

The music chain’s foray into social networking comes after HMV Group chairman Carl Symon announced that the company had performed below expectations this year.

HMV saw profits drop by 73 per cent over the past year, and was forced to sell its 62 Japanese stores last month. Despite buying rival chain Fopp earlier this month, it is still struggling to compete with popular music-download sites such as iTunes.

Cake head of digital, Simone Day, will head the account. HMV currently has no retained consumer agency, although Coalition PR helps manage and promote the chain’s in-store events while Brunswick handles ­its financial comms.

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