Steven Smith Teamaker


In 2009, Steve Smith—founder of Stash and Tazo tea— decided to launch a new tea company called Steven Smith Teamaker, a small batch, full-leaf line based in Portland, Oregon. The public relations challenge was to capitalize on Steve Smith’ industry expertise, while departing from Tazo’s corporate image, a company he sold to Starbucks in 1999. Additionally, Watershed sought to fuel interest in this new specialty tea company in an already crowded category with limited budget.

the solution:

Conducted an integrated public relations campaign that started with brand conception and product development in 2008 to strategically launching the line of products to national fan fare in October of 2009.

Organized a New York City media tour with Steve Smith, which included individual tea cuppings with high profile media, such as Toby Ceechini of the New York Times, Hannah Wallace of Travel & Leisure and Alia Akam of Organic Spa.

Executed a strategic product mailing to key media and industry influencers, tapping both traditional and nontraditional media outlets.


Sales began October 1, 2009 and so far the campaign has placed 20 print, broadcast and web hits with more than 8,347,727 impressions and a PR value of more than $772,055.80.

The product line continues to expand with ever increasing media interest.

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