BT merges media buying and planning

BT Retail has promoted Grant Millar to the newly created role of head of media, as it merges its media strategy and buying functions into a single unit.

The move comes as BT prepares to review its media buying and planning agency arrangements. A statutory review is due next year, but BT has the option to extend the agencies’ contracts by one year. It says it has yet to begin the review process.

Millar, who was formerly BT media strategy and planning manager, will now be responsible for managing BT’s media buying agencies – The Allmond Partnership and Zenith Media – and all media deals affecting the BT Group.

Management of media buying was formerly handled by two BT procurement department employees, who have moved to BT Retail.

Millar was responsible for organising BT’s “Who Wants To Be a Millionaire?” interactive TV game.

His former boss, Simon Elwood, will continue to liaise with BT’s planning agency PHD, but will extend his role as head of communications planning to include market research and competitive intelligence.

Louise Ritchie, head of BT Retail’s market research and intelligence, is leaving the company.

Both Elwood and Millar will report directly to BT Retail director of marketing services Amanda Mackenzie.

Mackenzie says: “A dedicated media unit headed by Grant means that we can add strength and focus to how we use media across BT. Combining research and communications planning will also provide improved focus, ensuring that the customer is at the heart of everything we do.”

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