Branded Content - Media & Production

Media Companies Investment in Digital Agencies Brings Results

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Last year, premium publishers went on a spending spree to acquire digital agencies, many who specialize in branded content, targeting or creative.

Gannett, for example, purchased ReachLocal for $158 million and the New York Times paid $21 million for HelloSociety and another $11 million for Fake Love, according to global marketing consultancy R3. Time Inc. and Vice also made similar acquisitions totaling $50 million. Others, like Bloomberg Media, have taken a different tack. Within the last eight months, for example, it's brought in former Ogilvy & Mather Chief Creative Officer Teddy Lynn and former Dentsu exec Michelle Lynn to staff internal efforts.

The Financial Times credits its acquisition of content marketing studio Alpha Grid for its diegital advertising and services revenue surpassing print revenues for the first time in its 129-year history.

The Financial Times said its branded content studio, FT2 ("FT Squared"), saw a 400% revenue increase in paid posts in 2016. Alpha Grid services some of those clients, which generates one-third of its revenue. The rest of its income is generated from clients it signs up.

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