Odgers Berndtson, a leading global executive search firm with offices in more than 30 countries around the world, has appointed Julie McKeen as the firm’s new Head of Media, following increasing demand for existing and newly emerging leadership roles across the entertainment and media sector.
Julie will work with broadcasters, content creators and media agencies to place senior executives across the full spectrum of the leadership team, from the c-suite to creative, content and studio directors. She brings to the role a unique blend of major global agency networks, brand-side and executive search expertise; her previous roles include board advisor, brand strategy marketer and entrepreneur with a culmination of twenty years’ experience across multiple D2C, consumer and platform businesses.
Her appointment comes amid a seismic shift in the UK media landscape where disruption has ushered in a new era of media consumption habits, upended revenue and engagement models and completely changed the traditional company structure. Against the backdrop of this increasing disruption, PwC predicts the UK entertainment and media sector to grow by £15bn over the next five years and by 6.72% in 2021.
“The sector is in a capital-intense period, with content – both video and the spoken voice – riding the wave of disruption and enjoying a new golden age,” said McKeen. “Advertiser revenues are in flux, the playbook for customer engagement is being rewritten, and experimentation with commercial models is increasing. All of this is paving the way for adaptable, collaborative, data-savvy and hybrid leadership talent, that is increasingly sought-after by clients”.
The Coronavirus pandemic has accelerated many of the sector trends across entertainment and media, including the uptake in over-the-top (OTT) video and streaming services and decline in global newspapers and advertising spend.
“Although much of the traditional entertainment and media industry is going through a tumultuous period, we’re seeing a rise in niche publishing opportunities, in-house teams, own-brand journalism and commercial studios,” said McKeen. “In part, this has led to a talent landscape that is increasingly fluid, with leaders moving from media agencies into big tech and vice-versa. As a result, we can expect to see leaders bring expertise from adjacent industries and shake up the sector with innovation and monetise and grow in new ways. Never has there been a more exciting time to navigate such a fast-moving space”.
Julie McKeen will report into Simon Cummins, a Partner and Head of the Global Media, Sports & Gaming Practice at Odgers Berndtson. Commenting on the appointment, Simon said, “Julie brings an unrivalled level of knowledge and expertise to this position. Her diverse background in the agency world, as a brand-side marketing leader, a successful business founder, and as a leading executive search consultant is a huge advantage and will place us in a strong position to help our media clients steer a course through the ongoing disruption. There’s no doubt that she will be an asset to this firm.”