Nobody Told Me There’d Be Days Like These

Peter Naylor, SVP of NBC Universal referenced John Lennon’s lyrics “Nobody told me there’d be days like these” during his keynote presentation at AdMonsters’ 20th Publisher Forum in New Orleans last week. The fact that we are in uncharted waters certainly permeated the entire event, but everyone was focused on what Ad Operations leaders and their departments can do to help direct their companies and focus on revenue. Peter’s keynote presentation gave perspective on what he sees as the biggest challenges and opportunities facing online ad sales – and how Ad Operations are essential to facing those challenges and seizing those opportunities.

We are all in sales and customer service. Naylor dismissed the theory that companies consist of sales and people who support sales: everyone is in sales and customer service and should act accordingly. Peter pointed out that according to studies, advertisers are considering fewer sites when planning ad spend which necessitates that everyone in the company needs to help make the sale and then keep the client.

Don’t bring me problems. Bring me solutions. Peter spoke of the importance of Ad Operations and that the issues Ad Ops teams faces are many. Those issues need to be addressed and sales teams need to understand to a certain degree the complexity that goes into fulfilling online ad campaigns. That being said, Peter made the point that Ad Operations must focus on enabling sales and prioritizing both innovation and maintenance initiatives around revenue. Other sessions at the event touched on this point saying that Ad Operations must not be labeled a ‘No’ department but a “Yes” department that provides solutions.

Don’t expect more resources commensurate with demand for innovation. This has emerged as a central topic for 2009 as more is demanded of Ad Operations than ever before without the ability to grow headcount to compensate. Peter’s advice to the group was to help grow alternative revenue sources and to develop innovations that helped grow revenue in the short term and serve as building blocks for the future.

Peter’s keynote really helped set the Publisher Forum in the right direction and his presentation was continually referenced throughout the week. There is no question that Peter’s message is that he looks to Ad Operations leaders to lead and that he understands the importance of Ad Operations to Sales’ success. We really appreciate him setting the stage to an amazing event!

Rob Beeler is Vice President of Content and Media for AdMonsters and has worked in Ad Operations for over ten years. Rob started attending AdMonster events in 2004 as a member and will be in New York on April 16th for Leadership Forum US VII