Morning Coffee Feb 09 2012

Armstrong's Patch for AOL's Patch

By damian ghigliotty

After pressure from investors, AOL head Tim Armstrong hopes he's got a new solution to fix the site's hyperlocal news network, Patch.

The Internet services and online media company said it hired editor Rachel Fishman Feddersen as chief content officer of its 863 regional Patch sites in an effort to make them more profitable, Reuters reported. Fishman Feddersen, 41, will join the company Feb. 15, AOL said.

The job is a major step up for Fishman Feddersen. In her current role as digital content editor at Swedish media publisher Bonnier's Parenting Group, she oversees between 10 and 15 people, a Parenting Group spokesperson said. Patch employs over 1,000 journalists and a few hundred ad sales reps, totaling about 1,400 employees, Janine Iamunno, a Patch spokesperson told FINS.

Iamunno couldn't say how many of the network's journalists Fishman Feddersen will oversee. As chief content officer, she will not oversee sales. AOL and the Parenting Group announced an ad sales partnership and content exchange in early January.

"Rachel is a world-class expert at engaging online audiences and connecting communities with the information they care most about – which is the foundation of Patch's mission," Jon Brod, the president of AOL Local, Mapping and Ventures and one of the founders of Patch, said in a company press release.

Hopefully for AOL that will lead to more ad dollars. One investment group expects that Patch will lose as much as $150 million this year, according to Bloomberg.

Sales Buzz

Tempered Job Stability (FINS)

Keep your cool and keep your job. FINS spoke with several career experts about the impacts of flipping out at work.

Nuts (WSJ)

Michael Mendes, Diamond Foods' chairman and chief executive, and Steven Neil, its chief financial officer, have been placed on administrative leave from the Stockton, Calif., packaged food company. The departures come after an internal investigation found that Diamond Foods had wrongly accounted for payments to walnut farmers.

Frozen Yogurt (Adweek)

The New York pharmacy store chain Duane Reade is adding self-service frozen yogurt kiosks to some of its stores.

More U.S. Manufacturing (WSJ)

More domestic-based production and manufacturing is a good sign for domestic-based sales and marketing.

Retail Contest (Retail Means Jobs)

The National Retail Federation, the world's largest retail trade group, has launched a video contest to help promote the role that retail plays in driving growth in the U.S. Winners will receive $25,000.

Marketing Buzz

Time Warner Growth (Media Decoder)

Time Warner Inc. reported a 5% increase in fourth quarter revenue and a 0.5% increase in fourth quarter earnings. "We're investing aggressively in programming, production and marketing," the company's chief executive, Jeff Bewkes, said in a news release.

Digital Spending (Forbes)

As digital marketing becomes more prevalent, chief marketing officers will begin to spend more on IT than chief information officers in the next five years, says Forbes.

Buying PaidContent (Ad Age)

The digital media and tech blog publisher GigaOm is buying the digital media news site from the Guardian. The terms of the deal were not disclosed.

More WaPo Buyouts (Media Decoder)

The Washington Post is extending a new round of voluntary buyouts to help keep the company competitive.

Buzz Around the Office

Ad Mashup (Adweek)

A remix of all the 2012 Super Bowl ads in a 2 minute montage.

List of the Day: The Job Search

Use these tips to outmaneuver the desperation that can set in if you haven't landed your perfect job.

1. Be realistic but don't settle.

2. Surround yourself with positive people.

3. Use your time wisely.

(Source: The Daily Muse)

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