TFRONT OFFICE BY MARY COLLINS

Collins | The Challenge Facing Today’s Credit Departments

For media businesses, the COVID-19 pandemic, and related recession, accelerated trends related to the introduction of new advertising products and accepting new and different types of advertisers. It is also exacerbating the problem of slow payments and accelerating business failures. Given these changes, it may be time to re-evaluate credit approval and accounts receivable practices.

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Collins | Assessing The Workplace – Where We Go From Here

With all businesses now forced to conduct business remotely, some are embracing employee flexibility as more than just a temporary solution. There are benefits to adopting flexible work schedules — flexibility, reduced turnover and lower expenses. With that, can come increased company loyalty. Offering this type of work-life balance can lead to increased productivity, even if the arrangement is part-time. Such offerings can also make the company an employer of choice, boosting both recruitment and retention.

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Collins | Getting Back Into The Game

While the COVID-19 pandemic has battered the live sports industry, including broadcasting and cable networks, creative minds have been working on a variety of new cross-platform opportunities to attract fans and advertisers.

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Collins | A Glimpse Into The Future Of Entertainment

The pandemic has sharpened focus on new technologies, including virtual applications. “In the next five to seven years, you’re going to see multiple waves of virtual devices ingrained into mass consumer electronics,” predicts Ted Schilowitz, futurist for Paramount Pictures.

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Collins | Time For Talk About Race In Media

That is an inherently uncomfortable proposition. But, as we are seeing amid civil unrest and protests across this country and abroad, having frank and honest conversations on the subject, including the ability to air grievances without negative repercussions, is really the only way we can move forward. These conversations must be followed by meaningful actions. Learn about five such actions to help companies keep the lines of communication open while making the changes that need to be made.

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Collins | Solving The Complexities Of Software Solutions

Any new software process transformation should begin by asking three questions: What are the costs? What are the business requirements and pain points to be resolved? How will the software solution be implemented?

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Collins | Defusing Distress During Uncertain Times

I know of no crisis communications manual or management course that instructs one on how to lead during a worldwide pandemic. The reality is that managers must continue to find ways to engage, motivate and lead an anxious workforce while dealing with those same anxieties themselves.

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Collins | Redesigning The Workforce, Post-Pandemic

In March, when state shutdowns began, companies had only days to transition to work-from-home. No one could predict how long such arrangements might last. Now, it seems that some employees will be returning to offices soon, while others will work from home through the end of the year or indefinitely. If they haven’t done so already, now is the time for companies to evaluate the potential issues with these arrangements.

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Collins | Rising Above A Pandemic

Enlightened businesses who will survive today’s challenging environment will realize the value of reaching customers via equally savvy media companies that can provide both core media products along with broader exposure for marketing messages via today’s emerging services like over-the-top, podcasting, geofencing, branded content and retargeted banners.

TVN’S FRONT OFFICE BY MARY COLLINS

Collins | COVID-19 And Media Companies’ Futures

With every generation relying on media from a multitude of sources to inform and distract more than ever before, there is a huge opportunity for media companies to engage a captive audience. Forward-thinking media companies will be focused on creative solutions to keep engaging content flowing to consumers across a variety of platforms while continuing to find ways for advertisers to reach their potential customers.

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Collins | Navigating Tricky Political Public Files Rules

Broadcasters face new and complex political file requirements resulting from a series of decisions the FCC made in late 2019 that have resulted in what one attorney calls “a political quagmire.” While there are calls for the commission to reconsider its decisions, for now companies are required to comply with new and complex political file requirements.

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Collins | Reaching Your Highest Goals Through Change

Embracing the unknown helps us own the future. Self-awareness must come first, as it requires us to recognize the ways of behaving that we’ve developed over time. The challenge is that during times of uncertainty, like we are living through now, our comfort zones only get smaller and less easy to penetrate.

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Mary Collins | Cloud Gaming Poised For Growth Spurt

The recommended isolation to combat the coronavirus provides an ideal growth medium for a media business focused on immersive storytelling and social media interaction. Couple that with the recent suspension of most live sports and the resulting hole in television (and some radio) schedules and growth is almost inevitable.

TVN’S FRONT OFFICE BY MARY COLLINS

Collins | How To Improve, And Ease, The Hiring Process

Filling a vacancy can be problematic. However, there are good candidates and good solutions for companies willing to think creatively. Such solutions may even improve a company’s overall results.

TVN’S FRONT OFFICE BY MARY COLLINS

Collins | Boosting Minority Ownership Hits Roadblock

Why have the FCC’s decade-long efforts to liberalize the broadcast ownership rules been stymied by two judges and will that continue?

TVN’S FRONT OFFICE BY MARY COLLINS

Collins | Coaching Can Be Key To Bettering A Business

Selecting the right company leaders for coaching and helping them identify the coach that will be most effective for them can accelerate performance, success and career trajectory. It can make the delivery of key projects more rapid and successful.

TVN’S FRONT OFFICE BY MARY COLLINS

Collins | Risk Taking As A Business Strategy

The ability to take risks, a skill that can be practiced and mastered, can lead to improved outcomes. Challenges that require a risk-taking mindset are based on responding to external customers. Organization leaders face similar challenges responding to internal customers and employees.

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Collins | What’s It Take To Attract The Best Employees?

Mostly, it requires companies to pay careful attention to how they come across in social media and on their own websites, thinking of them as promotional rather than just informational. Always keep in mind that as you are checking out potential hires they are checking out you.

MFM Names New Board Members, Officers

 Media Financial Management Association (MFM) today announced the 2019-2020 officers and newly elected board members for the association and its BCCA subsidiary, the media industry’s credit association. The new slate was announced during the MFM/BCCA annual conference in New Orleans.  Incoming directors’ terms run from July 1, 2019 through June 30, 2022. Effective July 1, the officers for […]

TVN'S FRONT OFFICE BY MARY COLLINS

Political Just Part Of Mix For Success In 2016

Although political and the Summer Olympics bode well for local TV, there are a number of factors that will affect advertising in 2016, particularly in markets that don’t have tight races. TV stations need to be ready for challenges like changes in ad agency operations and problems with collections, as well as maximize digital opportunities.

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Stop Missing Digital Ad Sales Opportunities

Stations are shortchanging themselves, says Gordon Borrell: “Traditional media’s relentless requirement to do more with less has led to underperformance in the…digital space… While I’d agree that digital media offers product extensions for existing newspaper, cable, TV, radio and magazine customers, I’d also say that a far bigger opportunity exists.”

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Averting The (Advertising) Credit Crisis

There has been an insidious move by major brands to delay payment for advertising services rendered. In the past few years we’ve seen DSO (days sales outstanding) numbers creep up, particularly on the national accounts side. Invoices may say “net 30,” but payments are coming in at 45 or even 60 days. Since payment delayed is lifeblood denied, here are some best practices you can employ to manage your DSO.

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Avoiding Social Media Content Firestorms

With the growing importance of second-screen applications, particularly those involving social TV, it’s very likely most of your news team is actively engaging in social media networking. However, this growing activity is creating some novel legal issues and a few heavy-duty migraines for some managers. Here are tips on what to do now to prevent social media problems and ensure your station doesn’t wind up in court or become fodder for competing news organizations.

FRONT OFFICE BY MARY COLLINS

Avoiding Social Media Content Firestorms

With the growing importance of second-screen applications, particularly those involving social TV, it’s very likely most of your news team is actively engaging in social media networking. However, this growing activity is creating some novel legal issues and a few heavy-duty migraines for some managers. Here are tips on what to do now to prevent social media problems and ensure your station doesn’t wind up in court or become fodder for competing news organizations.

FRONT OFFICE BY MARY COLLINS

Feeling Stressed? Rebalance Your Goals

One way to address overcoming some of the stress that we — and the people we manage — are experiencing is by alleviating the overloaded list of goals we have set. Here are some suggestions on how to get your goals in balance without overfilling your capacity.

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Tips For A Hostile Client Makeover

Everyone needs to know how to defuse the tension in the heat of the moment when dealing with hostile advertising clients, employees, colleagues or vendors, and then how to move forward to achieve the outcomes you desire. Here are 11 steps toward accomplishing that.

 

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Running The Numbers On Collection Firms

There have been a number of major national cases over the past several years where experienced collection companies were able to collect debts in full while creditors who agreed to a standard plan or tried to negotiate with the debtor ended up with lots of hassles and very little recovery. Here are some basic rules of thumb concerning when media companies should employ the services of a collection agency or legal firm.

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Unclaimed Property A Big Risk For Stations

Companies are required by state laws to try to reunite ex-employees and others with unclaimed property — prizes, credits, wages, shares of stock and other assets. And with states looking to close their budget deficits, there’s been an uptick in auditing activities designed to discover businesses that may not be complying and collect penalties.

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Ignore Social Media Rules At Your Peril

Social media campaigns by stations must not only comply with standard state or federal laws that apply to all promotions regardless of the delivery method, but they also must follow rules that are unique to social media. Here’s an overview of rules that stations will need to follow when implementing a social media promotion.

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Tap Local TV’s Digital Ad Revenue Potential

Through their local ad sales teams, TV stations have relationships with the 5.6 million small- and medium-size enterprises looking to devote a larger share of the $38 billion they will spend on advertising to digital media next year. Not only can stations provide the display ad opportunities that command a significant portion of the digital ad spend, broadcasters have demonstrated their ability to drive that large number of people who spend their time watching TV to those ads.

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Proper Credit Management Yields Extra Cash

Lowering a company’s days sales outstanding can be, well, outstanding. Collections expert C. Robin Szabo describes a careful way of doing it that can really pay off. It involves training new customers, retraining old ones, getting low-spend customers to use credit cards and, if needed, going to court.

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Clash of Cultures Costly In New Hiring

Employers can save themselves considerable time and resources by making sure they understand their own corporate culture and taking care that prospective hires fit in. Hiring a single person can cost as much as $19,000, not counting the lost productivity from the hiring manager, according to one study.

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Setting The Tone For Strong Management

There is a clear link between a company’s bottom line and the “tone at the top” (TATT) set by its managers and supervisors. Here are suggestions on how to recognize and foster good TATT at your company.

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Math For Mobile DTV Adds Up For All

Incorporating  the broadcast-based service into smartphones and tablets at MCV and the Moble500 Alliance are trying to do would bring a number of revenue-generating benefits to everyone involved. Content producers and syndicators, advertisers, local stations and wireless networks all stand to profit.

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How To Make The Most Of Social Media

Traditional media must recognize that having a social media strategy is essential for remaining competitive. Stations can’t take advantage of their ability to deliver a large base of engaged consumers to advertisers if they themselves aren’t engaging in the type of social media campaigns that we’re seeing at the network level. In addition, social media is quickly replacing email as a form of interacting with consumers, particularly when it comes to 18-34 year olds.

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New Contracts Are Music To Station Budgets

The recent settlement reached between the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers and the Television Music License Committee reduces the fees paid by station to ASCAP for both blanket and per-program license fees for 2012 through 2016. In addition, the new licenses will cover all broadcasts by stations, including both primary channel broadcasts and those made on [multicast] secondary digital channels.

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Obscure Accounting Rules Can’t Be Ignored

Two accounting organizations are in the process of converging their two sets of accounting standards. Essentially, the proposed change will require companies to re-classify operating lease agreements. In addition to anticipating these types of upcoming changes to accounting rules, financial managers are also finding that their accounting systems must be prepared to address the latest challenges from federal and state agencies that are looking to collect revenue through stricter enforcement of their existing laws.

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MFM 2012: Keys To Unlocking Digital Rev

Presenters at our Media Finance Focus 2012 conference last week emphasized the need for media companies to adopt a “fleet” rather than a “mother ship” mentality toward sales. As Kannon Consulting President Barbara Cohen explained: “There is no going back. The future is not about how digital will save your traditional business. It’s about making the infrastructure changes that allow you to profit by operating a portfolio of media businesses, and digital is not the answer alone.”

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Handling Digital Ads Harder Than It Has To Be

Michael Shimkin (left), ESPN’s senior accounting analyst, explains the value of creating a standardized media industry credit application. He also offers advice on how to evaluate potential local Web advertisers and spells out what he sees as the next steps to make the business more profitable and less time consuming.

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Can You Bank On Your Broadcast License?

The issue of whether a broadcast license can be used as collateral is a huge one. It appeared to have been settled in the 1990s by a series of court decisions that effectively separated “an interest in proceeds and an interest in the license itself.” But recently some courts have taken a different stance, expressly rejecting this application of the bankruptcy laws by adopting the former court rulings.