Maria & Todd: “An Exchange Of Brands”

By Brian 

David Carr says all that needs to be said about the Maria Bartiromo issue:

  “…There is an implicit contract at play here. By making huge advertising buys on CNBC, Citigroup obtained access to its biggest star. Clearly, an exchange of brands was under way.

CNBC has positioned itself as an adjunct to business, the glowing friend in the corner with the sound off and a ticker at the bottom. In that respect, CNBC has roughly the same relationship to Wall Street that ‘Entertainment Tonight’ has to Hollywood: boosterish, gossipy and more than a little starry-eyed.

It is companion media rather than the source of oversight or rigorous coverage that you might expect from, say, The Wall Street Journal. By demonstrating that it was able to deliver Ms. Bartiromo for important functions, Citigroup was able to use her fame as an adjunct to its marketing. It didn’t own her so much as rent her through its ongoing advertising on CNBC.”


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