BBC global news division to create separate digital roster

The BBC’s global news division has announced plans to create a new roster of digital marketing consultancies for its international digital communications. The division, led by director Richard Sambrooke, incorporates the BBC World Service radio, BBC Monitoring, BBC World television and the BBC’s international on-line news services.

It operates independently of the ‘corporate’ BBC, according to a spokeswoman.

‘Because the division is international-facing, dealing with audiences in Russia, Asia and the Middle East, we needed to have a separate roster of agencies that can handle different languages, alphabets and fonts. Agencies that have already been shortlisted for the main BBC digital marketing roster can also apply for this,’ she says.

The projects will include the digital marketing and promotion of brands associated with the global news division’s programmes and services.

The ‘corporate’ BBC has already shortlisted a number of groups for its digital marketing roster since announcing plans to overhaul its design and digital rosters last month (DW 15 August).

Agency Republic, GT, 20:20 London, Glue, Play and Start Creative have been named as groups that have made it through to the next stage of the statutory roster review.

Groups that will make the roster are expected to start work on Web strategy and online advertising at the beginning of next year.

Separately, the closing date for the design tender, which was put out at the same time, has been put back to 21 September.

A number of design groups that have applied to get on the roster have expressed frustration with the lengthy tender process and its effectiveness.

‘It is completely hopeless and a waste of agencies’ time. You jump through hoops to get on the roster and might have one job in five years,’ says one creative director.

Another source says that in the past the BBC has recruited a company to help assemble its roster, but once put together there was no guarantee that it would be properly implemented.

The design roster has previously been divided into television channel branding, major strategic design projects, tactical design projects and youth. This year, the process and categorisation has changed, according to a number of applicants. The BBC has so far failed to clarify these changes to Design Week.

Digital groups applying for the global news division roster should submit expressions of interest to by 31 October.

Public service – eg, BBC News
Commercial – eg BBC DVD, BBC Worldwide
Channel – eg BBC Three, BBC One
Content – eg grouping of various brands defined by content
Event – eg BBC Proms
Genre – eg BBC News, BBC Sport
Initiative – eg The Big Read, Fat Nation
Platform – eg, BBCi
Programme – eg Eastenders, The Office
Publishing – eg Good Food, Good Homes Magazines
Service brands – eg BBC Shop, BBC Costumes & Wigs

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