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CTAM Ends Summit, Insights Confabs

The Cable & Telecommunications Association for Marketing is pulling the plug on the annual CTAM Summit — which will end its run after 37 years — and its Insights Conference, citing “structural changes” in the marketing organizations of its 90 corporate members.

In addition, the group is shifting from its current mix of individual and corporate memberships to a corporate-centric business model.

With the changes, CTAM expects to lay off eight of its 33 employees by year-end, or about one-fourth of its staff , president and CEO Char Beales said.

Beales said CTAM Summit and the Insights event became unsustainable after several MSOs dramatically consolidated their marketing organizations and programmers followed suit by closing affiliate sales offices in the field.

“There are just fewer people,” she said. “To do a Summit at the level the members expect takes a disproportionate amount of resources of the member companies.”

CTAM will introduce smaller, more frequent meetings and educational events in place of the larger conferences. “In a fast-moving industry like cable … to get together once a year seemed outdated,” Beales said. “So meeting more often makes more sense.”

For example, CTAM plans to introduce a one-day session in New York, aimed at director-level executives at cable networks. It also will host a high-level, invitation-only seminar for MSO chief marketing officers and content marketers, with the first scheduled to be held during the 2013 International Consumer Electronics Show in January.

As for the shift toward corporate membership, Beales said the key benefit of CTAM’s individual memberships was that they offered significant discounts for the Summit and Insights events. In addition, “it was duplicative because a lot of our members were already paying the corporate dues, so it makes sense to bundle that all together,” she said. With the changes, CTAM’s revenue base will shrink, Beales added.

Individuals who are not employed by corporate members may continue to join CTAM at 2012 rates.

“As a board, we are pleased to see the organization evolve and continue to deliver on the programs that are so valued,” David Juliano, Comcast executive vice president of sales and marketing and CTAM chairman, said in a statement.

CTAM will continue to run several cooperative marketing and educational services, including the Cable Mover programs, which will deliver more than 1 million leads to member MSOs this year.

At a Glance: CTAM Events

The Summit/Insights gathering in Orlando, Fla., in October drew 1,407 att endees, down from 1,672 in 2011 in New York.

CTAM will lay off eight of its 33 employees by the end of 2012.

CTAM Summit debuted in 1976, while the Insights conference started as a research workshop in 1982.

Source:Multichannel News research