Internal memo: Star Content Studios
DATE: May 7, 2012
TO: All Toronto Star and Star Media Group Staff
FROM: John Cruickshank
RE: Introduction of Star Content Studios
I am pleased to announce the formal launch of Star Content Studios, a new initiative designed to provide content services to external clients and to handle commercial content within Star Media Group properties. The team that has developed Star Content Studios is led by Ed Greenspon, Vice President Business Development, and Cathrin Bradbury, Director, Content Development for SMG.
The need to create this new group within Star Media Group is obvious.
Increasingly, advertisers and marketers are seeking innovative content marketing solutions to extend their level of engagement beyond conventional advertising. Content marketing spending in Canada is estimated at between $700 million and $1 billion annually, with companies increasing the use of their own websites and social media properties to tell stories related to their brand.
Importantly, as I have said in the past, the newsroom should not be distracted from its core mission of reporting on major news events, investigations and features.
That’s why, unlike other media outlets, we have designed Star Content Studios as an approach that will keep commercial content outside the newsroom. Star Content Studios offers full digital and print services, from editorial and video content for a brand’s website to highly focused social media messaging.
It can create magazines, video campaigns, advertorials, tablet apps, catalogs and annual reports. It will provide services primarily in five areas, namely content marketing, cause marketing and corporate social responsibility, corporate communications, social media and thought leadership.
Today, many people see themselves as a publisher, but few have the editorial skills and discipline that the seasoned editors at Star Content Studio have. The tagline for Star Content Studios is “Authentic Storytelling.” It’s meant to capture a key point of differentiation as we market this content expertise.
We firmly believe that Star Content Studios will be an important source of revenue for Star Media Group. Already, Star Content Studios has worked successfully with several major external organizations, including the Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada.
In the coming weeks, Star Content Studios will launch several initiatives, including a stand-alone website at starcontentstudios.com, a social marketing strategy, external communications and special events. We will soon hold staff presentations for all interested SMG employees at which we will provide more detailed information about Star Content Studios.
Please join me in welcoming the Star Content Studios team and wishing them great success.