Video: Catherine Warburton's Advice to TV Networks

By Jack Myers Legends & Leaders Archives

Catherine Warburton, Chief Investment Officer for MDC Media Partners, joined me for an exclusive pre-Upfront interview, in which she focuses on advice to guide network TV and other media sellers as they approach a changing marketplace. Read a sampling of Catherine's comments below, watch my full video with her above, and view all my Legends & Leaders interviews with senior industry executives at www.LegendsLeaders.org.

WARBURTON: The business has become more challenging in a lot of different ways, and it's become more complicated. As we look at the television networks, the biggest challenges are their ratings. There's continued erosion, ratings decline, and then also you have their programming migrating over to digital platforms and our measurement with TV and digital together isn't quite there. So, it's almost like you feel like you have a leaky boat and you need to capture what's going into digital. It's important for us as an agency to capture the audience wherever it is. It's important that we organize ourselves so we can invest across platforms, and I think that's challenging for the media owner as well as the agency for a variety of different reasons.

WARBURTON: Our clients are trying to get a lot closer to conversion in their business. They want to make sure that we're looking beyond just CPMs, and as we're looking at data, we're looking at how we convert to actual sales. Watch Catherine's full interview here.

WARBURTON: In the past, you could buy network television, you were graded on mass reach.  You could get mass reach very easily.  So now we have a situation where it's harder to get mass reach because the ratings are fragmented, and then we're all being graded on different metrics and the client is giving us their data. Then we have to partner with the television network and share information in order for them to best serve the client.  So, I think that both parties need to be more open to new ways of doing things, and be more open in terms of information.

WARBURTON: I think the most important quality that a media partner has to have is to be open-minded about how to operate in today's framework, but then how to build towards the future. I think a lot of things that have happened in the past few years in the digital space with the advent of programmatic digital, I believe that a lot of television-oriented media owners feel somewhat threatened by that. Instead of feeling threatened I think they need to figure out what the best way is to move forward.

Watch more of Catherine Warburton's advice to TV network and other media sales executives here and view all my interviews with senior industry executives at www.LegendsLeaders.org.

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