Media Moves

Bloomberg Media CEO: Video traffic up, Bloomberg Business site in Europe and Apple Watch app coming

April 1, 2015

Posted by Chris Roush

Justin SmithBloomberg Media CEO Justin Smith sent the following message to employees on Wednesday:

Dear Media colleagues,

We wanted to begin updating everyone more frequently on Media’s evolution and highlighting some of the innovative and notable things happening around our business. I’ll be sending these notes monthly.

Our two biggest advantages right now are the breadth of our platforms and the power of our global journalism operation. It’s why we’ve evolved our sales team into a multi-platform operation and integrated our operations across platforms in Europe and Asia — and why John Micklethwait’s announcement last week of an integrated editorial process was so important. We’re already seeing better global coordination on coverage and demonstrating how a single story can work across every platform.

This won’t capture it all, but here are a few important moments and developments of the past month:

  • Bloomberg Business continues to gain momentum. Video traffic spiked in March due to deeper integration of video content across the site, leading to a 30 percent year-over-year increase in video audiences and our best month of live video streaming since October 2013. Year-over-year, we’ve grown social traffic by double-digits.
  • Bloomberg Politics is already making an impact with its 2016 election coverage. To date, 13 potential presidential candidates have joined “With All Due Respect,” including Ted Cruz the day after he formally announced his candidacy.
  • In Asia, Parry Ravindranathan and Gary Groenheim have brought on another local-market Bloomberg TV partner–Cignal TV, in the Philippines. This new partnership brings our local-market TV partnerships to a total of 12 and they are a critical part of our strategy to expand Bloomberg’s brand into high-priority markets for Core. Over the long term, these partners could also begin to act as a network of on-air correspondents for Bloomberg TV, as well. For example, I saw this past week that Jose Leyva from El Financiero-Bloomberg TV reported on Mexican rate cuts and Uber in Colombia, and Ted Fine has been working with our partners on increasing these types of hits in the U.S.
  • Our R&D team made a splash with a blog post about Brisket, the single-page application framework the team created to power our new digital sites. I’m very impressed by the reception, including a spot near the top of important industry aggregator HackerNews. These kinds of innovations are important not only to our own product development, but also to helping Media and the rest of Bloomberg attract and keep the best developers. I’m confident there are more opportunities for this kind of industry-leading innovation in other areas of our business — our syndication products, our TV and radio engineering, and other areas.
  • You may have noticed some small changes to our TV coverage lately, including the introduction of regular global news bulletins, which are making our TV content more valuable to both our core financial and broader business audiences. Our coverage of Fed Chairman Janet Yellen’s press conference this past month was a particular standout and has an impact far beyond any single day’s audience. Winning on major announcements and news events is crucial, as we see our audiences spike and have an opportunity to capture and retain new viewers.
  • Media EMEA MD Adam Freeman led a robust Bloomberg presence at Advertising Week UK, with our colleagues participating in a range of activities, including Bloomberg TV’s own Francine Lacqua’s keynote one-on-one with WPP Chief Martin Sorrel (where he plugged Bloomberg) and her interview with Publicis Groupe Chairman Marucie Levy. Matt Teeman also participated in a “Masters of Monetization” panel at the conference.
  • Finally, earlier this year, we announced changes in our Bloomberg Live division. Led by Stacy Kennedy and Stephanie Mehta, and with Vik Degtar as publisher, the team has designed an ambitious events calendar for 2015. Our goal is to focus on the development of larger, high-impact events to make Bloomberg the premier institution for convening influential business and finance leaders globally. We are really looking forward to our first few events in Q2.
In April, a few important events to note:
  • On April 13th-16th, Paul Caine and Jacki Kelley will be holding our first annual global sales meeting in New York. Our colleagues from sales, ad ops, and sales enablement globally will spend time on improving their knowledge about our product suite, building sales skills, and learning from some impressive industry guests. And congrats to Keri Bernstein and Margaret Emerson from the sales team, who were just yesterday recognized as “Rising Stars” in Folio:’s annual Top Women in Media list.
  • In anticipation of the UK general election in May, our London editorial teams will be increasing coverage of UK politics, including hour-long specials on Bloomberg TV Europe.
  • We’ll be hosting the Businessweek Design conference in San Francisco on April 28th, linked to a special issue of the magazine. This year’s event features guests from leading technology and design companies like Houzz, Pinterest, Medium, and Pentagram, as well as some of our own editors, including Emma Rosenblum and Belinda Lanks.
  • Also, towards the end of the month, we’ll have a special announcement of our first regional edition of Bloomberg Business in Europe. Nate Lanxon will be leading this European edition and helping to coordinate coverage and curation across Europe for our digital presence there.
  • For the projected 14 million who are expected to buy the Apple Watch when it becomes available this month, Gregg Fenton and team are hard at work developing a mobile experience for Bloomberg Business in a wearable, glance-enabled environment. A major component of our consumer media strategy is to work with technology leaders like Apple to help bring innovative products to our customers.

Thank you for all of your hard work across the organization. Let’s keep going.

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