By Alfred Branch, Jr. Looking to continue to grow the exposure of it rapidly expanding empire, StubHub! recently tapped public relations powerhouse Ruder Finn...

By Alfred Branch, Jr.

Looking to continue to grow the exposure of it rapidly expanding empire, StubHub! recently tapped public relations powerhouse Ruder Finn as its agency of record. It replaces the former AOR Waggener Edstrom Worldwide, and the parting was reportedly amicable.

The new deal with Ruder Finn does not have a specific length, and according to Howard Solomon, managing director of Ruder Finn/West, the two sides agreed to a renewable contract where StubHub! is paying the company six figures annually. In addition to StubHub!, Ruder Finn’s other clients include The North Face, Seagram’s and Tivo. . .

“Ruder Finn will assist us with all aspects of our communications program including media relations, program management and strategy,” said Sean Pate, StubHub’s director of PR. “I expect that you’ll continue to see StubHub’s name as a prominent industry voice around any ticketing issues. Our primary focus is to expose the benefits of our business to as many people as possible through the media and other channels.”

The change in agencies comes at a time when StubHub!, while continuing to sit atop the the secondary ticketing mountain, it cannot rest on its laurels in the highly competitive marketplace.

In relation to that, StubHub! is also continuing to work with the PR firm Rogers & Cowan, to help drive the company’s visibility in the music industry. “This is an area that has been neglected a bit and needs more penetration by StubHub!,” Pate said. “The average concert user does not know our name like the sports fan does.”

StubHub! decided to change agencies, in part, after Andy Pray, a former account executive for Waggener Edstrom, joined Ruder Finn as a senior account executive, Pate said, adding that StubHub! was grateful for Waggener Edstrom’s efforts but that the secondary ticketing giant needed to alter its direction.