Promax Abuzz With President Potential

Jun 9, 2007  •  Post A Comment

Cliffhangers and A-listers, two elements commonly used by marketers to generate interest in a new series, may be better suited this year to the media marketers’ own Promax/BDA conference.
Although participants at this week’s annual New York City gathering are excited to hear speakers Bill Clinton, director John Waters and clothing magnate Kenneth Cole, they’re even more eager to know who, exactly, will take over as president of the organization and drive it into the future.
The good news is that the buzz-building worked, with the organization tracking ahead of last year’s pace in membership, conference registration and sponsorships.
The conference takes place June 12-14 at the New York Hilton, and more than 3,000 are expected to attend. Other speakers include Doug Herzog, president of MTV Networks Entertainment Group; Larry W. Jones, president of TV Land; and Lauren Zalaznick, president of Bravo.
“We’re feeling really good right now about the state of the conference,” said Lee Hunt, president and interim managing director of Promax/BDA. “Everything is in really good shape, from the sessions to the awards to the attendees.”
The key question to be resolved, however, is who, if anyone, is named to the top of the organization. The post has been vacant since the unexpected departure of Jim Chabin, who had been CEO of the organization since 2003. Mr. Hunt, who temporarily stepped in to take Mr. Chabin’s duties while Promax/BDA searched for a replacement, said candidates were being interviewed for the position, but he was unsure if the group would make a pick before the conference starts.
Promax/BDA executives have finalized an intense three-day schedule of sessions and workshops around the theme of “Intersections 360” for its 2007 conference as it aims to address the challenges of marketing in today’s multiplatform, global entertainment environment from all sides.
Longtime attendees from around the content business were uniformly positive on the gathering’s schedule, whether the speakers, the opportunity to meet with clients or the chance to learn about new facets of the industry.
“There are really some great speakers this year, and Promax has struck a nice balance between the creatively inspiring and the business relevance sessions,” said Elaine Cantwell, founder and creative director of the Los Angeles-based spark creative. “As a business, we’re always excited to hook up with clients, see who is out there and who is attending, and gauge the health and well-being of the industry.”
New-media gurus also will have their say at the conference. Digitalsmiths CEO and Co-founder Ben Weinberger will be producing “The Future of Online Advertising.” However, perhaps more important, he plans to use the opportunity to talk business, including Digitalsmiths’ broadband video ad matching tool, Video Sense, which applies corresponding ads to digital video using image-recognition technology.
“As media has shifted from traditional broadcast distribution to digital online, VOD and new technologies, Promax executives are embracing this and clearly have made an effort to stay current with panels that reflect that change,” said Mr. Weinberger.
For syndicators, who see the gathering of station executives as an opportunity to meet about promotions and marketing for fall series, the timing of the show is perfect. Four months after NATPE and three months until the launch of the new season, distributors and stations will continue to talk promos.
“For us, any opportunity to get in front of our stations and our clients is valuable,” said Betsy Bergman, VP marketing for NBC Universal Television Distribution, which is launching four series into syndication this fall. “In recent years, our meetings have been not just about on-air campaigns, but also about the digital components that stem from these shows. That’s a huge push for us, whether it’s ‘Access Hollywood’ or ‘Maury’ or the new [Steve] Wilkos show.”
The distributor will be setting up shop in a Hilton suite, with professional massages available for clients.
Warner Bros. Domestic Television Distribution also will have a suite, where it will be touting the upcoming off-net launch of “Two and a Half Men” as well as first-run newsmagazine “TMZ.”
“Three shows are really dominating the marketplace for this fall; ‘TMZ,’ which is the hottest first-run show by far, and ‘Two and a Half Men,’ are two of those programs,” said Ken Werner, president of WBDTD. “At Promax we’ll have the opportunity to meet with our clients about stepping up our timetables as well as deliver to them all of the promotional materials. For us, that’s what makes a Promax successful.”


  1. well done!nice job!

  2. Great blog!! You should start many more. I love all the info provided. I will stay tuned 🙂

  3. I am not actually positive if greatest methods contain emerged around things like that, except I am certain that your great job is clearly recognized. I was thinking if you offer some membership to your RSS feeds as I would be extremely interested.

Your Comment

Email (will not be published)