Bloomberg is leveraging its vast reach in financial data, its media heft and its broad-based, deep-dive research to be the world’s next go-to management consultancy.
“Everything we do is from and for our audience,” said Bloomberg Media global chief commercial officer Andrew Benett, who joined the company in June. “Yes, Bloomberg is a media owner, but it’s so much more,” Benett told Adweek.
The new consultancy will tap rich data from the Bloomberg terminals, the built-in research arms of Bloomberg Intelligence and Bloomberg New Energy Finance (BNEF) as well as its 2,700 journalists and analysts.
“Given what’s happening in the industry with the complete blurring of the lines where consultancies are taking over agencies, we have a tremendous opportunity,” said Benett, who spent the last 13 years at Havas, lastly as CEO of the Creative Group.
The media sales organization will operate within the consultancy model, with the sales team evolving into practice areas to be overseen by Bloomberg global CRO, Keith Grossman. Benett expects to hire 20 to 25 people to supplement these specific practice areas, including financial services, tech & telecom, auto, government as well as luxury and lifestyle.
“I’m like a kid in a candy store because there’s so much intelligence in this company,” Benett said.
The company has also spent the last year building a new product called Bloomberg AIQ an AI-powered tool that scrapes the deep mine of Bloomberg content and 30,000 other publications. The tool will help clients in audience modeling, campaign analytics and thematic web search.
Benett believes the new service “is better than any agency or consultancy because they don’t have these assets.”
While adding a new stream of revenue—companies will pay between $150,000 to $200,000 per month for the service—Benett said the consultancy is not meant to make up for any potential downtrend in other areas, namely the Bloomberg Terminal, for which sales are up this year, and make up the vast majority of Bloomberg LP’s $9 billion annual revenue.
“Our core business is a healthy business,” Benett said, adding, “This has nothing to do with a diversification strategy on the terminals. This has everything to do with a diversification strategy in the media group.”
The company already has 5 clients lined up: two in technology, one in financial services, one in auto and another in retail.
Two clients, CA Technologies and Hartford Funds, have been working with Bloomberg for several years.
“Each year, they have become more adept at harnessing the power of the larger Bloomberg organization to provide strategic insights surrounding their unique audience that goes well beyond media alone,” said Anna Griffin, svp of marketing for CA Technologies. “As a marketer it excites me to have platforms where we can marry insight, personal context and experience with our message.”
“Their deep business knowledge provides us with unique access to a valued audience,” added Chris Poe, head of brand marketing for Hartford Funds.
Said Benett: “Our strategy is, we will be one part consultancy, one part integrated agency, and the best media owner that really understands its audience.”