Agencies could charge for ’time wasting’ by MTV

Disgruntled consumer agencies are considering billing MTV after the cable music channel carried out a full pitching process before deciding to make an in-house appointment instead.

Disgruntled consumer agencies are considering billing MTV after the

cable music channel carried out a full pitching process before deciding

to make an in-house appointment instead.



Pitches were heard from agencies including Cake, Freud Communications,

Henry’s House and Propeller Marketing Communications.



The reason given to the agencies for the change of heart was MTV’s

’headcount’ - a policy dictated by parent company Viacom. Previously,

MTV had too high a staff count to employ a press officer, but this

changed after pitches were heard. It will be the first time in 18 months

the position will be filled.



One agency is considering billing MTV for pitch costs. ’We put in a lot

of time and effort, and they got a tremendous bunch of ideas,’ a senior

staff member told PR Week.



He added that the agencies involved in the pitch had been told by e-mail

of the decision to go for the in-house option.



’We all got the same e-mail, saying the same thing,’ he said. ’MTV

doesn’t seem to realise that agencies might talk to each other.’



David Pullan, vice-president of marketing communications and on-air at

MTV Networks told PR Week: ’It is purely an issue of unfortunate timing.

We would never knowingly waste an agency’s time, or mislead them.’



The new press officer will report to Dylan Jones, communications

manager.



Incumbent agency, Coalition PR, was also invited to pitch but

declined.



Letters, p9.



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