ITV centralises promotional teams into new London unit

ITV has axed its regional promotional teams to set up a centralised unit in London in an attempt to cut out duplication and favouritism to local broadcasters’ programmes.

The new team, the Network Promotions Unit, will be led by Steve Allen, currently creative director of Granada UK Broadcasting. He will report to ITV marketing and commercial director John Hardie.

The centralised structure is similar to the BBC’s unit, called the Broadcasting & Presentation department.

Staff for the 20-plus strong unit may be recruited from the regional TV companies’ old promotions teams, but external candidates will also be considered.

Hardie stresses the NPU, which is expected to cost 5m annually, is not a cost-cutting move. He says the aim is to improve the effectiveness of ITV programme trailers..

In the past regional TV companies put together their own trailers, and there was a suspicion that programmes made by the local broadcaster were favoured for promotion.

Almost all of these promotions will be made in-house, but Hardie says in some cases ITV’s advertising agency HHCL & Partners will collaborate with the NPU.

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