Sega streamlines its media buying — Realignment and the Creation of a New Post Are Steps to Refine Operations

In a move aimed at streamlining communications between Sega of America and its media planners and buyers–Bozell/L.A. and Bohbot Communications/S.F.–the video game company has restructured and created a new internal position to oversee its media functions.
Sega also recently consolidated all planning on its estimated $75-million account with Bozell. The San Francisco-based company plucked Elaine Starling, formerly associate media director at J. Walter Thompson/S.F. on the agency’s Sprint business, to internally oversee planning and buying. Bozell handles national teen broadcast buys, consumer print and, for the past two weeks, all planning. Goody, Berlin & Silverstein/S.F. had been Sega’s primary planning resource. Bohbot buys Sega’s national kids broadcast and spot TV. Starling will be the main conduit between top Sega marketing execs, who recently were realigned along product lines, and Bozell and Bohbot.
Starling added that she will handle Sega’s buys in video game enthusiast magazines, primarily Video Games & Computer Entertainment, GamePro and Electronic Gaming. “She gives us an interface with someone at Sega who really understands media,” said Ben Benya, senior vp/media director at Bozell/L.A. “She’s worked in media and she really has a good understanding of how it works.” Starling’s arrival–and the consolidation of planning with Bozell–are just a couple in an array of recent changes at Sega. In addition to aligning marketing responsibilities along product categories such as Genesis and sport software, the company also picked off a major exec from its arch rival. Several weeks ago, William White, formerly director of marketing and communications at Nintendo, became Sega’s new vp/marketing. He reports to Ed Volkwein, senior vp/marketing.
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