Lifetime Television: ICON Helped This Network Finely Tune Its Corporate Travel
Lifetime Television is the leader in women’s television programming.
With original movies, series and reality shows, Lifetime has the attention of tens of millions of female viewers every day – a very attractive proposition to many advertisers. But there is another side of running a network that few outside the industry see.
The entertainment industry heavily depends on relationships. And those relationships are built through extensive business travel, client entertainment and the ability and willingness to respond to last-minute business-building and publicity opportunities.
How ICON Uncovered Value
ICON took a unique approach with Lifetime, offering trade creditAn alternative currency used in the corporate barter industry; one of ICON's financial options. (Note that this term is properly used only in the singular, i.e., never trade credits.) for portions of its inventoryWhile this can refer to a client's physical inventory of merchandise (which, if it represents an undervalued asset, could form the basis of a corporate barter transaction), in the corporate barter world, inventory more commonly refers to a supply of advertising time/space purchased in advance by the barter company, which client companies use as fulfillment to complete their side of a corporate barter agreement.. That gave Lifetime options it previously never had. The company’s SVP of Advertising Sales noted, “We can use barter credit throughout the company. We can leverage something that might not have been budgeted or something at the end of the year that increases our profit margin – something that’s not normally an expense for us.”
The SVP of advertising sales continued, “In a big organization, everything is finely tuned. You have a budget for this, a budget for that, but rarely can you live within those guidelines. Things crop up. With ICON we can extend our corporate travel, we can do some type of fulfillmentThe process through which ICON delivers the goods and services clients have purchased from ICON using trade credit or cash or both. Also referred to as the back end of a corporate barter transaction. – like a golf outing. We entertain clients a fair amount in our business and we have a large sales force to take care of, not just one or two tickets but 20 or 30 or 40. And ICON has a great travel department – we changed our minds about 50 times!” Here’s one thing Lifetime has not changed its mind about : corporate barterThe creation of value by exchanging a client's unwanted or undervalued asset for the promise to purchase over a period of time from the corporate-barter company a defined set of goods and/or services, called fulfillment. (Sometimes mistakenly referred to as Corporate Trade.) works!
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