Hearst, BuzzFeed and LIMA Licensing Execs Share Secret Sauce

As New York Toy Fair came to a close Tuesday, the Global Licensing Group at UBM and LIMA hosted “Media Brand Licensing: An Afternoon of Case Studies and Networking” in New York City. The event was specifically targeted to educate traditional media and new media brands that are entering into licensing to better understand the engagement that licensing offers to each brand’s audience.

The event’s speakers were three of the global licensing industry’s top executives including Maura Regan, president, International Licensing Merchandisers’ Association; Steve Ross, chief global licensing officer and head of brand development, Hearst and Eric Karp, global head of licensing, BuzzFeed.

Ross and Karp presented case studies of their respective successful licensing collaborations to the group, while Regan discussed the importance that licensing plays in a brand’s success.

Ross shared how Hearst’s global licensing program utilizes its iconic magazine portfolio to bring Hearst to the forefront with not just the loyal consumers of its publications but to products and experiences where the media brand may not even have a presence in print (like an Esquire Whiskey Lounge that’s under construction in New Delhi, India).

“Licensing allows a powerhouse media company like us to connect more deeply with our audience beyond the magazine or tablet,” says Ross. “And driving diversified revenue streams like brand extension licensing has never mattered more, especially since some of the more traditional publishing business models are eroding.”

Karp shared how BuzzFeed finds licensing opportunities within its robust content and how the content platform works to license product its followers will not just use but will recommend.

“We weave together not just traditional advertising, but partnerships with ad sales partners, affiliates, consumer products and licensing,” says Karp.

Regan gave an overview of the size and scope of the licensing business.

“With licensing, we can keep the consumer engaged with the brand,” says Regan.

Media brands in attendance included The New York Times, Wall Street Journal, USA Today, Conde Nast, Bonnier Corporation, Hearst, BuzzFeed, Penske Media, Modern Luxury, Lagardere, PVH, Group Nine Media and more.

The intimate learning and networking event was the second in a series by the GLG, the licensing industry’s leading tradeshow organizer and media partner. Its mission is to provide licensing opportunities around the world by bringing brands and products together. Learn more at UBMregister.com/licensing.

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