Youth focused digital publisher Junkee Media takes media agency sales in-house from MCN



Junkee Media has taken its media agency sales back in-house, having previously been represented by MCN, and will now be represented by content sales manager Samantha Bradford.

For MCN the move comes just a week after Sensis moved its sales representation for display and programmatic advertising from MCN to Yahoo7, and at the same time that the it gears up to represent Network Ten under a new deal.

Junkee Media CEO Neil Ackland told Mumbrella the move had nothing to do with the TV sales house’s recent deal with Ten, which saw the network take a 25 per cent stake in MCN.

“We had a productive partnership over the last 12 months and we worked on several successful campaigns together. There’s a mutual respect between both teams. Our needs have changed and what we’re selling as a business has changed,” he said.

“We are constantly looking at what the optimum way of taking ourselves to market is. Obviously the business has been through a rebranding from Sound Alliance to Junkee Media and we wanted to bring the entire sales function back in-house so we had complete control over our offering and the way we present ourselves to market as an overall business.

“It’s been part of a strategic review we’ve been undertaking in the business. Mainly it is driven by the fact that what we sell as a business has changed, it’s really evolved from being a heavily display-advertising led three or four years ago to now being mainly led with content ideas.

“What we’re doing as a company now is much more focused on generating unique ideas for brands and being able to help brands tell and share their stories through content. How we develop those ideas we thought it was better to be done as one cohesive team.”

The new in-house agency team will be led by new hire Samantha Bradford, who joins from Mi9 where she’d spent nearly a year and a half as a sales executive/account manager.



Previously she was with Fairfax Media for two years as an agency account manager and has also worked for the likes of TorchMedia and Radio 2GB.

Bradford, takes on the position of content sales manager, and will lead the team dealing with media agencies for Junkee Media title’s including Junkee, inthemix, FasterLouder and AWOL.

On how bringing the sales team in-house might change the user-experience of the site Ackland said there won’t be a “huge amount of change” in the short-term.

“The short answer is we’re still working through that. There won’t be a huge amount of change to the way display advertising is working in the short-term but we will be reviewing that as we go. We want to focus on if we do display advertising trying to make it as high quality and high impact as possible rather than having lots and lots of ads across the page,” he said.

When the company rebranded at the start of last month Ackland said more than 50 per cent of the company’s revenue came from native content, a result which is leading the company to push into native video content, appointing Vincent Rommerlaere as head of video.

“That’s very much part of the video strategy is working with brands to develop engaging video content,” Ackland said.

“We’ve already started to do that with brands such as Intel and Telstra. The plan is to use the video format to be able to tell engaging stories that have a brand story at the heart. We’ve been really focused for the last couple of years on developing native around written words and now we’re expanding that out to include video as well.”

Junkee Media is also looking to hire an assistant to work under Rommerlaere, with the company planning to draw upon a network of freelance video creatives as demand grows.

“It will definitely be an area of the business that grows very quickly,” Ackland said.

With native advertising already representing more than half of Junkee Media’s revenue, Ackland is optimistic it will continue to grow.

“The current trajectory says it will probably continue to grow. I don’t think it’s going to grow as exponenetially as it has over the last couple of years but it’s definitely still growing,” he said.

“We’ve really focused on putting that at the core of our offering and the market’s responded really well to that, I think there’s more growth left in that.

On what is next for the company Ackland said the focus is “bedding down the new team”and getting our message out to market and re-connecting with all the media agencies and telling our story around how we work with brands around creating compelling content”.

“There’ll be a few tweaks and changes and a couple of announcements around how we’re building out the team,” he added.

Miranda Ward


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