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Stations Convene in Vegas for Second Annual PromaxBDA Station Summit

Six syndicators, five networks and nearly 750 industry executives will attend the second annual PromaxBDA Station Summit this week, which is being held at Planet Hollywood in Las Vegas Tuesday, June 26, through Friday, June 29.

"In a short period of time, this has genuinely become the preeminent event where the industry comes to trade ideas, discuss best practices, and figure out how to fundamentally drive the future of this business," says Jonathan Block-Verk, president and CEO of PromaxBDA.

"Marketing is what drives this industry," says Block-Verk. "Content is ubiquitous. The idea of good content is only as valid as your own personal taste and you can satiate any taste that you have. The difference between success and failure is how this content is delivered, packaged and monetized across these platforms. All of these are functions of marketing."

The Station Summit kicks off on Tuesday with a day of affiliate meetings between stations and their network partners, including ABC, NBC, CBS, The CW and NBC-owned Spanish-language network Telemundo. Fox and My Network TV declined to hold a meeting with affiliates at the Station Summit because it already hosts its own very similar meeting, the Fox Promotion Executive Conference (FPEC), in Los Angeles. This year, executives from 12 station groups will be attending the summit.

On Wednesday, six syndicators -- CBS, Debmar-Mercury, NBC, Sony, Twentieth and Warner Bros. -- will hold meetings with stations who carry their shows on how to best position and promote them in the coming season.

PromaxBDA Local is a day of sessions and panels meant to educate and inform attendees. Thursday (June 28) will kick off at 8:45 a.m. with Block-Verk talking to a panel of industry luminaries, including Nick Belperio, senior VP of marketing for Fox Broadcasting Company; Scott Blumenthal, executive VP of television for LIN Media; Marla Provencio, executive VP and CMO for ABC Entertainment Group; and Valari Staab, president of the NBC Owned Television Stations.

Mick Ebeling, founder and CEO of The Ebeling Group, who is also well-known from his TED talks, will keynote the day, starting at 9:30 a.m.

Other panels include "So You Want to Launch a Talk Show" at 11:30 a.m., moderated by the author of this post, and including CBS Television Distribution's Michael Mischler, executive VP of marketing; Harpo's Jonathan Sinclair, executive VP and executive producer, development; Telepictures president Hilary Estey McLoughlin, Tribune's president of programming and entertainment Sean Compton and Twentieth's Lisa Kridos, executive producer of Ricki Lake.

Lunch will feature the Just Cause Awards, which recognize local media leaders in "cause marketing and pro-social commitments to their community."

After lunch, there will be a panel on social media and a discussion on how to reach millennials by Mike Hais and Morley Winograd of Mike & Morley.

The PromaxBDA Local Awards will be handed out 5 p.m., leaving the evening free for people to socialize and network as they please.

"We take all of this very seriously, but we also work in a very fun industry and that's reflected in everything we do," says Block-Verk.

Contributing editor Paige Albiniak has been covering the business of television for nearly 25 years. She is a longtime contributor to Next TV, Broadcasting + Cable and Multichannel News. She concurrently serves as editorial director for entertainment marketing association Promax. She has written for such publications as TVNewsCheck, The New York Post, Variety, CBS Watch and more. Albiniak was B+C’s Los Angeles bureau chief from September 2002 to 2004, and an associate editor covering Congress and lobbying for the magazine in Washington, D.C., from January 1997-September 2002.