A well-known media executive has been named as the first-ever CEO of the integrated marketing services company Water Cooler Group. The company announced Monday the appointment of Christina Norman, the former CEO of OWN: Oprah Winfrey Network, to the newly created position.
Norman will oversee “all creative and business operations for [the group’s] offerings in media, social/digital, advanced analytics and creative delivered through its divisions Media Storm, 3Degrees, Juba Plus and Maude,” the company announced. Norman begins her new duties this week.
The media veteran “will lead the company’s growth strategy, bringing experience as an accomplished brand builder and content creator,” the announcement adds. “A veteran media executive who has led iconic brands VH1, MTV and OWN, Christina most recently served as head of her own company, Gemini Entertainment, providing strategic insights to media companies and producing original multi platform content.”
Craig Woerz, co-founder and Managing Partner at Water Cooler Group, commented in the announcement: “The media agency I created and the integrated marketing-service business we have grown into today are very different. We have evolved into a holistic communications company working with iconic brands across industry verticals, all partnering with us to help them better understand and reach their core consumer. And Christina will bring to our non-entertainment brands deeper access to intersect with entertainment and our media clients in a marketplace seeking this connective tissue. She is the world-class leader the company needs today, and really sets on fire our ability to provide brands with unparalleled access to media and media brands.”
Before leading OWN through its launch in January 2011, Norman spent 17 years at Viacom Media Networks, “leading some of the world’s biggest media brands. As President of MTV she provided leadership, strategy and management for MTV, MTV2, mtvU, and mtv.com and led the launch of MTV Tr3,” the announcement notes. “During her tenure as President of VH1, she garnered widespread praise for rejuvenating the brand, helming a diverse programming slate and leading the network to record viewership levels.”
Commenting on her new appointment, Norman said: “As the world of marketing continues to change, being at a company on the forefront of innovating solutions to deliver an increase in profitability for brands is very exciting. Water Cooler Group and I were both nurtured in the world of entertainment and media, we share the same passion for unlocking the power within this unique heritage for all brands … an approach proven out by their growth within retail, hospitality, energy, healthcare and travel. Having been a client of Water Cooler Group over the years, I am thrilled to now be part of the team.”
MediaPost reports that Norman “effectively replaces Antony Young, who held the role of President of the group, and who is leaving the company to return to his native New Zealand.”