HEYER STEERING TURNER INTO MARKETING ALLIANCES;PLAYER OF THE WEEK;SALES PRESIDENT MOVES TO TIE IN BRANDS WITH THE DIVERSE HOLDINGS OF TURNER EMPIRE

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Meet Steve Heyer and within 5 minutes you'll be able to surmise this about him: He's intense, no nonsense and he's clearly going somewhere.

Just 20 months after being named president of Turner Broadcast Sales, Mr. Heyer has been given the additional responsibility of supervising all of Turner Broadcast System operations in Europe.

So besides worldwide sales, Mr. Heyer is now in charge of the distribution and carriage of the Turner networks-from CNN to the Cartoon Network-on the Continent. His new duties will also put him on the prowl for strategic alliances in Europe for distribution of Turner product.

WHILE AT BOOZ HAMILTON

Mr. Heyer, 43, first became familiar with Turner when he was a senior VP-managing partner at Booz, Allen & Hamilton's flagship New York office; the consultancy had been hired to evaluate the efficiency of the Turner operation.

From there, he joined Young & Rubicam as president of Y&R Advertising Worldwide. Mr. Heyer's expertise-creating innovative marketing strategies for key global clients-became invaluable when he left Y&R to join Turner.

What Mr. Heyer found at Turner 20 months ago was a sprawling, multimillion-dollar sales organization, one that bills about a third of all money spent by advertisers on national cable. But as big as Turner is with its TV properties-CNN, Turner Network Television, the Cartoon Network, the ad-free Turner Classic Movies and Superstation TBS-Turner Broadcasting System is actually much larger.

Besides the TV networks, the company includes New Line Cinema, Castle Rock Entertainment, Turner Pictures, Hanna-Barbera Productions and Turner Publishing. So Mr. Heyer immediately defined his mission as finding a way to integrate all Turner properties for advertisers.

"I'm the chief exploiter of TBS," he said. "If we didn't have all these properties, I'd just be the head of ad sales."

MARKETING PARTNERS

He looks at advertisers as potential marketing partners. What he wants from his sales staff is out-of-the-box thinking; how can the Turner holdings be best exploited by an advertiser to build the advertiser's brand?

"How can we increase a consumer's loyalty to a brand?" is one way he put it.

Mr. Heyer wants to create events. One example was a TNT/Diet Coke promotion for Valentine's Day. A short, assembled using clips from Turner's vast film library and featuring movie kisses, was shown in 8,000 theaters, branded with the Diet Coke logo.

A similar short, again for Coca-Cola Co.'s Diet Coke and this time featuring monsters, will be shown around Halloween.

Part of the overall package are spots Diet Coke buys on the Turner TV properties.

"So here we've taken the copyrights we own-the movie clips-and leveraged them in such a way that we are more important to Coke than your average network," Mr. Heyer said.

"We've created a more robust relationship with Coke that should serve us both well going forward."

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