Emphasizing partnerships

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Rudd Davis in September was named to the newly created position of VP-business development at USA Today. Davis, who was formerly CEO of BNQT Media Group, is responsible for developing new business opportunities and strategic partnerships. He is also in charge of USA Today's retail, hotel and education-based partnerships.

Media Business: What's your initial priority to enhance the visibility of USA Today?

Davis: My priority isn't to make the brand more visible but to dispel the perception that we are simply a newspaper company. My priority, along with my colleagues', is to deepen the value of USA

Today to our audience and to our advertisers. One way we'll do this is through new products and services and another way—which falls particularly to me—is through partnerships, such as how we'll work with Google, and Facebook and incumbent digital companies, which are really driving the media-consumption evolution.

MB: How will you be involved in developing more integrated marketing packages?

Davis: The reorganization [announced in August] is about establishing a much more creative and collaborative environment. The media landscape today is such that the audience and advertiser experience need to be thought of in tandem; how to engage an audience and give them the best possible media experience while delivering relevant, impactful but nondisruptive advertising requires the cooperation of multiple departments that are traditionally siloed in a publishing company.

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