News Corp and Ritson's school for media agencies kicks off

Lindsay Bennett
By Lindsay Bennett | 4 October 2016
Damian Eales at the Come Together event 2016

News Corp and the Melbourne Business School have developed an education program aimed at educating mid-tier marketers and media agency staff. 

The program, first announced at News Corp's 'Come Together' upfronts event last month, will focus on media planning, media investment and brand management to develop the knowledge and competency across the sector. It will be headed up by outspoken marketing professor and consultant, Mark Ritson.

News Corp managing director of metro and regional publishing Damian Eales tells AdNews the decision to launch the Media and Marketing Institute stems from so many industry execs progressing through their careers without formal training.

“There are many mid-to-senior level agency staff who are making decisions that have little to no formal marketing training. It’s not a negative observation, but by partnering with the Melbourne Business School we can bring the best in breed in terms of marketing strategy and education to the table for our agency partners,” he says.

“In a world where marketing investment decisions are increasingly complex, we see it as essential that as an industry we remain grounded in the marketing principals that remain true, no matter what the media choice.”

The program is available through media agencies Dentsu, GroupM, IPG Mediabrands, Omnicom and Publicis.

“Our clients talk about how better thinking and better strategy is important to them. By helping them improve we are forming a better relationship with these partners. Equally, we see it as an investment in the calibre of our own employees.”

The first cohort of the program will allocate 25 spots to a mixture of agency, client and News Corp employees.

GroupM business development and marketing officer Greg Graham says: “The News Corp Media and Marketing Institute is a brilliant initiative and GroupM is proud to be involved. Training and developing our best talent is vital for our industry and we want to thank News Corp for investing in our leaders of tomorrow.”

Eales says despite Ritson's tough stance on digital, referring to it previously as a 'tsunami of horseshit', the course will teach across all media and won't skew towards News Corp's channels.

“Ritson has never been a detractor of digital marketing. He has some strong view points on social bit he's an advocate of doing digital marketing well.

“It's not about digital versus traditional anymore. It's about using the right media at the right time in the purchase funnel and those mediums overlap considerably today."

“This program is not a plug for News Corp. Obviously we offer a lot of products and services in the marketing funnel, but this is first and foremost a media-neutral course,” Eales says.

News Corp has also been a key sponsor of The Marketing Academy which launched two years ago to better equip the next generation of marketing leaders.

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