Decision marks the first time the social brand appoints a social agency of record.
McCann Erickson New York has won social marketing duties for Weight Watchers, a brand rooted in two mainstays of social media - game mechanics and the power of connections.
The assignment follows a review involving nine other digital and "specialist" agencies, McCann said. Spending was not disclosed.
Lee Hurley, director of online marketing for Weight Watchers, said in a statement, "McCann NY demonstrated advanced understanding of how social media can help further build consumer engagement with our brand and our PointsPlus program."
Razorfish will continue to handle the brand's social analytics, while McCann focuses on strategic engagement initiatives. McCann has previously run social media programs for Kohl’s, Nikon, and General Mills.
McCann NY has handled creative duties for Weight Watchers since 2007, most recently launching the "It’s A New Day" campaign with Jennifer Hudson. Responsibility for the client's social marketing had previously been scattered among a number of agencies. This is the first time the brand has appointed a social agency of record.
The win follows some significant senior appointments for McCann. Matt Freeman, previously CEO of Mediabrands Ventures, joined as global innovation officer in April. Earlier this month, FarFar founder Matias Palm-Jensen joined McCann in Europe as chief innovation officer there.
Weight Watchers faces rising competition in the dieting niche, and some rivals have been aggressive in social media. In April, Slim Fast purchased a Twitter Promoted Trend ad targeted to the trending topic #RoyalWedding that led users to a landing page on Facebook. Copy touted its product as a way to be "wedding ready."
Until March 2012, Zach Rodgers was managing editor of ClickZ's award-winning coverage of news and trends in digital marketing. He reported on the rise of web companies, data markets, ad technologies, and government Internet policy, among other subjects.
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