Fairfax is continuing its diversification by creating a special national events division to span Fairfax media properties that have until now run their own events.
The new division will be run by Denise Armstrong, who joins the company Massey University where she held the national events and sponsorship director role.
Fairfax currently has seven events within its portfolio including Round the Bays, Central District Field Days, NZ CEO and CFO Summits, Sustainable 60 Awards and Women of Influence Awards, but Fairfax Media New Zealand’s marketing director Campbell Mitchell says this is to increase this year, with announcements imminent.
Mitchell says the opportunity in getting the event division is “having the skills and capabilities brought into one team, and to have the best people that are most equipped to carry out events”.
He says it’s important to have specialists doing key activities, which is part of Fairfax’s broader strategy around its team structure – for example, the customer solution team, acquisitions team or national marketing team.
Campbell says that while Fairfax has been running events for a while, and they're good, they can now be great. He says the new team will complement Fairfax's ability to reach 80 percent of New Zealand every week, which can be used to leverage its customers and partners’ brands in, for example, sponsorships of events.
“Backed up with the power of our content channels across digital and print, it is a powerful combination.”
The team will include seven fulltime staff, which can be scaled up as required. “We obviously have peaks in demand according to when events are on, but we can also dial into Fairfax Australia in terms of extra capabilities – such as registration processes, website functionality,” he says.
Mitchell says having Armstrong on board is a real strength. “She’s a key leader, already with a strong CV in many events. That’s important when you’re building capability.” Previously she was national events and sponsorship director at Massey University, and before that she spent eight years at Acumen Republic as events director.
Creating teams that span departments is happening elsewhere in the New Zealand media. In May, APN created Collaborative Media Solutions (CMS) to provide media agnostic advertising services to clients across its platforms. Before, APN worked in isolated silos, rarely collaborating to offer multi-channel advertising options to clients – but now it has a team headed up by Nina Bialostocki to do all that for it. Also in May, Mediaworks was another, forming a sales team headed by Paul Hancox to span both radio and TV.