LivingSocial Kicks Up Publicity Battle, Hiring New PR Guru Andrew Weinstein

LivingSocial has hired former AOLer Andrew Weinstein to head up communications, as it faces a brewing battle against Groupon, which always seems to steal the spotlight as the largest company in the daily deals space.

Weinstein will officially begin July 6 and will report to Camille Watson, LivingSocial’s marketing chief.

Weinstein most recently was president of Ridgeback Communications, a media relations and public affairs company that served such clients as International Travel Services Association and Network Advertising Initiative.

Before that, he was the chief spokesman and VP of corporate communications at AOL for nearly nine years ending in late 2007.

He also currently serves on the board for the Humane Society of the United States.

He’ll be taking on the difficult role of raising the awareness of LivingSocial as Groupon readies for its blockbuster IPO, which aims to raise up to $750 million.

Earlier this month, Groupon hired Bradford Williams, who took over as VP of global communications. Williams was formerly VP of corporate communications at Yahoo.

While the two will be facing off in their new roles, it doesn’t appear that Williams and Weinstein overlapped in their previous roles at the respective Internet giants.

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There’s a lot of attention and PR around Marissa, but their product lineup just kind of blows.

— Om Malik on Bloomberg TV, talking about Yahoo, the September issue of Vogue Magazine, and our overdependence on Google