LifeLab studio launched by NewsLifeMedia

Rosie Baker
By Rosie Baker | 2 November 2015

NewsLifeMedia has launched a content studio to create bespoke content campaigns for clients that will see the publisher creating content for brands that will not sit on its own assets.

It could account for more than 20% of the publisher's total revenue in the first two years, according to CEO Nicole Sheffield. LifeLab has already worked on campaigns for Olympus and David Jones and is working with Diageo on how it brings the recently unveiled global strategy for Johnnie Walker to life in Australia.

Sheffield told AdNews that it will be a core team of five, at the start, including video editors and photographers, to start with, but will draw on expertise and talent from around the business to inform strategies and content.

It sits under COO Robin Parkes' remit, but the business is currently recruiting for a director to lead LifeLab. “The data, and understanding our traffic swell, informs what content is going to work, so if we understand the clients and their customer problems and use our data and content capabilities we should be able to create content for them that sits in paid, owned and earned environments, outside of our ecosystem,” Sheffield said.

“It might not fit on any of our properties, it may just be bespoke content for their website, or another medium. We would hope that our assets play some role in the media mix, but we’re not arrogant enough to think that our media is enough.

Probably our social environment will be where most of our early conversations will be.”

Sales will go through Sev Celik, NewsLifeMedia’s commercial director, and be handled by the category teams that formed as part of a restructure earlier this year. Other publishers have made similar moves, with Fairfax launching Made earlier this year. All the TV networks also have internal creative divisions that create bespoke content.

Sheffield doesn’t believe it puts NewsLifeMedia in competition with agencies, however, and says a lot of time has been invested in talking to agencies about how it fits into the puzzle.

A version of this story originally appeared in AdNews Magazine (30 October). If it hasn't landed on your desk, chances are you're not a subscriber. You can get your own copy in Print or on your iPad right here.

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