Traditional media looking for hired, digital, help … a sign of things to come?

Interesting story on Paid Content -

An Atlanta paper has hired a local digital agency to create a $1m campaign to position the paper as a refuge from the frenzy of digital channels.

I guess the thought is that a digital agency knows digital better than most, so will be able to craft a campaign that compels users to consider the Sunday print edition.

One thing I’ve noticed this year is most traditional media channels have bought into the idea (the false idea) that perhaps their channels aren’t that relevant anymore. You can almost smell the fear … the sad thing is, the fear is unwarranted and these media channels are still vibrant and important.

When digital was struggling to get in front of the agencies and marketers that really mattered one tactic that was used was to hire well respected practicioners from other media – sales people, producers, editors, strategists. It was considered wise as these people knew how the successful media positioned itself and as a result could move digital towards this more appealing positioning.

It’s still going on now. Kerry Mccabe is ex outdoor. So is Ed Harrison. Joe Pollard is very well experienced agency and client side. Rob Leach at MCN has significant TV experience in the UK. Karim at Google is ex magazines, Guy Gibbs is ex newspapers. Jenny Hosie at 7 Red is ex ACP. Richard Freudenstein at NDM is ex B Sky B. No shortage of new digital adoptees here and there are reasons why these people are in the roles they are … because they bring a more rounded experience and skillset into the role and can look at digital beyond the technology and picture it alongside the wider media world.

So it’s only a matter of time until traditional mediums look to experienced digital staffers to join them as they fight to maintain share. The reason why many traditional players are worried about digital is purely a lack of understanding and skill. Its natural to be scared of something you don’t understand.


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