Warner Bros. Discovery Overhauls U.S. Ad Sales Strategy, Structure

Warner Bros. Discovery, today announced a new strategy and structure for its advertising sales organization and leadership team under Jon Steinlauf, chief U.S. advertising sales officer.

Big media has been carefully evaluating its advertising process and structure in an increasingly complex ad market, including a challenging upfront this year.

There’s been cyclical ad softness for months, fueled by fears of a weak economy, layered on top of a structural decline in linear television. In the pivot to streaming, companies have been rapidly adding advertising tiers to their offerings.

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WBD said today its advertising agency partners will now work with dedicated WBD sales leaders for direct access to the media giant’s entire portfolio of brands, including lifestyle, entertainment, sports, news and streaming under one umbrella. The new strategy brings WBD’s full suite of Advanced Advertising Sales solutions across linear and digital platforms together “in a more impactful way,” the company said.

The new agency-focused teams will be led by Marybeth Strobel and Greg Regis and will be responsible for sales across WBD’s complete portfolio. Among the top six holding companies, Publicis, GroupM and Horizon Media accounts will sit with Regis, and Omnicom, Magna and Dentsu will be led by Strobel.  

“Over the past year, we have been listening to our clients and partners and have seen firsthand what is delivering real value for them and great performance for us. This new structure will allow us to deliver what matters most for all – creating a single and seamless interface into the full world of WBD,” said Steinlauf.

Executive lineup:

Jon Diament will drive the ad and partner strategy with a dedicated team for the entirety of the WBD Sports portfolio. He will also manage relationships and development with over 100 WBD clients who are official partners of the NBA, NCAA, MLB and NHL.

Ryan Gould will lead the Digital Team in a newly created role, and set the strategic direction of the company’s suite of digital offerings, including Max, discovery+, WBD Stream and CNN digital.

Sheereen Russell will oversee a new Client Partnerships team that will focus on client development and partnership strategy with key advertisers across the WBD linear and digital portfolio. This team will work more closely with other WBD divisions like theatrical, distribution, gaming and licensing.

Laura Galietta will continue to lead Integrated Advertising Sales Marketing across all WBD digital and linear platforms and genres.

Robert Voltaggio will continue to lead Advertising Sales Revenue, Planning & Operations, for all US Networks and digital platforms, portfolio management, sales support, commercial operations and direct response for the company’s entire portfolio.

Andrea Zapata will continue to lead Ad Sales Research, Measurement, Data and Insights and data strategy for the company’s portfolio of linear and digital brands.

The new structure will roll out over the next several weeks.

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