Handbag.com, the women-focused internet service operated by Boots
and Hollinger Telegraph, has signed up BBC marketer Alicen Stenner as
its first head of marketing.
Stenner will be responsible for all marketing activities for the free
ISP and portal site, which is launching today (Wednesday). She was
previously marketing manager for BBC Digital Radio.
Her appointment comes as Handbag.com unveils a multi-million pound
through-the-line-campaign by J Walter Thompson, with media by MindShare.
The campaign kicks off with three million CD-ROMs being distributed
through 1400 Boots high street outlets. The marketing push also takes in
press, radio, outdoor and online activity.
Meanwhile, Shiela Sang has been installed as editorial director of
She joins from the BBC’s public service internet offering, BBC Online,
where she was executive editor and was part of its senior management
Prior to that role, Sang worked as a channel manager at internet access
service LineOne. Both women report to Dominic Riley, managing director
Anne Grady and Anne Lewis have also joined the women-focused service as
head of business and head of finance respectively.
Handbag.com is structured around 18 core content channels, covering
areas such as education, fashion, shopping and health & beauty.
Several publishers are battling it out for a slice of the nascent
women’s market online, and Handbag.com is likely to face stiff
competition from IPC Electric and Associated New Media’s Charlotte
Street.com, which is expected to go live in two weeks. ANM recently
appointed BMP DDB to handle the launch of its service, which, it is
thought, will kick off with a pounds 3m campaign taking in TV, outdoor
and press activity.
’We believe this is the biggest launch of any web site in the UK. We
have unique content with expert advice as well as a great distribution
channel through Boots,’ said Riley.
Women will account for 40% of the projected 15.7 million internet users
in the UK by the end of the year, with the number of young women coming
online now greater than their male counterparts, according to figures
from Fletcher Research.
The web addresses are www.handbag.com and www.charlottestreet.com.