BACKBITE

There’s something quite depressing about enemies making up. Life would just be too nice if we all liked each other - and there’s nothing worse than nice.

There’s something quite depressing about enemies making up. Life

would just be too nice if we all liked each other - and there’s nothing

worse than nice.



The other thing about enemies becoming friends is that they often form a

formidable alliance - bad news for any rival. There’s nothing like an

enemy for knowing your weaknesses and your strengths.



So you can imagine the nail biting that could be going on at the news

that Carlton and Granada are becoming chummy. The two companies now

share a common interest - British Digital Broadcasting, the winner of

the digital terrestrial TV licences in which they have a 50/50 stake.

Even the sales directors, Martin Bowley and Mick Desmond, seem to be

getting on a little bit better these days. Bad news for the

gossip-mongers.



The irony is that this digital terrestrial malarkey is yet another

warning signal that the days of ITV’s omnipotence are numbered, and now

the ITV companies must act together to reinforce the ITV brand.



But with bets on as to when the ITV ownership will contract to two

owners, United News and Media is the one always fingered for being out

in the cold. With Carlton and Granada getting smoochy, it’s perhaps no

surprise that last week United moved to shore up its ITV credentials by

snapping up HTV, one of the few remaining independent ITV companies.



We’ve already heard about ITV’s promises to bring in a marketing

director and a strong, independent chief executive to run the Network

Centre (and let’s hope that the very first thing to go under the new

regime are those awful on-screen ads from M&C Saatchi).



But these will prove to be empty promises unless the trio can truly

co-operate for the good of ITV, digital or no digital. Let’s not get

carried away by the excitement of the new technology. ITV should remain

omnipotent for many years to come, and Carlton’s and Granada’s first

allegiance should be to the ITV brand.



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1 Job description: Digital marketing executive

Digital marketing executives oversee the online marketing strategy for their organisation. They plan and execute digital (including email) marketing campaigns and design, maintain and supply content for the organisation's website(s).