BBC seeks group chief

Corporation hunts broadcast supremo to run branding and strategy for all TV and radio operations

The BBC is looking for its first overall marketing director to co-ordinate all its UK branding, strategic marketing and press and publicity for the corporation’s TV, radio and national and regional operations.

Sue Farr, former head of BBC Radio marketing and publicity, who was appointed marketing controller for BBC Broadcast last week, is chasing the position.

Also in the running is Jane Frost, head of corporate centre marketing, and Keith Samuel, who was appointed head of BBC Broadcast’s controller of press and publicity last week.

The corporation is also understood to have appointed headhunters to look for external candidates.

The position will oversee those currently filled by Samuel and Farr at BBC Broadcast (MW November 1). It is not known whether corporate centre marketing will be subsumed within the BBC Broadcast directorate that was created in the BBC’s restructuring in June – and therefore be under the remit of the new appointee.

The overall marketing role was recommended by management consultancy McKinsey, which was called in by director general John Birt to look at all communications money the BBC spends.

“The role is required to give the corporation a coherent marketing direction,” says one BBC source. The present plans acknowledge that there is a need to increase awareness of marketing among BBC executives.

The debate was kicked off by Frost’s appointment two years ago and was given impetus by the use of off-screen advertising to support BBC Radio,” he adds.

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