LONDON, 14 JANUARY 2010 -The Association of Online Publishers (AOP) announces the appointment of Sarah Messer, Head of Commercial Research & Insight at ITV, as the new Chair of the AOP Research Committee. Sarah takes over from Anita Hague, Head of Global Research at the Financial Times who was the AOP Research Committee Chair for three years.

As part of a comprehensive review of the internal structure of the AOP undertaken by Lee Baker, Director of AOP, the chairs of the committees will rotate more frequently: the post will be held for 12 months to allow more chairs to bring wider experience to the working groups. The Research Committee is instrumental in defining research projects and creating networking opportunities for digital publishers to tackle common issues, share knowledge and create a forum for research debate, ultimately to create an opportunity to shape the content and outputs of AOP insight activity.

Tim Cain, Head of Research and Insight at AOP comments, “Anita has done a fantastic job in chairing our Research Committee, which has flourished as a well supported group that has created value for members; and has driven a number of research projects to provide insight to digital publishers. We welcome Sarah who has over 13 years experience in online, broadcast and print media, and brings with her a clear understanding of how digital formats can play a key role for publishers. Sarah has also been an active member of the AOP, including a position as representative on the UKOM Technical Group for the past three years.

“The Research Committee is a hands-on resource, a working group ideally positioned to identify issues facing our members, and able to provide a barometer of industry need through research and insights to help publishers understand their consumers in a fast-changing environment. In 2010, AOP will be continuing to build on its core research outputs including the Organisation Census, Content and Trends Census and Digital Landscape Report, as well as conducting new research into advertising engagement and effectiveness.” Tim concludes.


2/ AOP appoints new Research Committee Chair

Sarah joined ITV in February 2007 and heads a team responsible for all research to support the Commercial Sales department, providing strategic insights about ITV’s content and platforms to the industry: working closely with agencies and brand owners to help them make the best of their campaigns. She was previously with News International working on the Sun and News of the World newspapers and websites from 2004; and prior to this was at the Financial Times for seven years.

Sarah Messer, newly appointed Chair of the AOP Research Committee says, “I have been fortunate to have been working in media for about the same length of time as the internet has been growing and changing our lives, gaining exposure in all my work to the digital world and the challenges it brings. I believe the AOP has a unique opportunity, working with its family of media owners and agencies who have existed for many decades, to help them navigate the digital landscape.”
- ends -

Further information from:
Tim Cain, Head of Research and Insight - AOP 020 7400 7510 /
Lorette Nettar, PR - AOP 07968 521 684 /

About AOP
The UK Association of Online Publishers (AOP) is the industry body representing online publishing companies that create original, branded, quality content. AOP champions the interests of companies from newspaper and magazine publishing, TV and radio broadcasting, and pure online media. The AOP raises awareness, lobbies and addresses concerns relating to all areas of online publishing to industry and Government; covering topics such as paid-for-content, online subscription models, data protection, copyright, content management, new technologies and audience measurement. AOP publishes original research including the annual Census now in its seventh year. It also hosts forums, conferences and events, where members can debate issues, meet peers and network.

The AOP hosts two annual flagship industry events, the AOP Digital Publishing Awards held in June 2009, and the AOP Digital Publishing Summit held in October 2009.

AOP Members include AN Digital, Bauer Consumer Media, BBC, BBC Worldwide, BSkyB, CBS Interactive, Channel 4 New Media, Condé Nast Digital, Economist Group, Financial Times, Future Publishing, Global Radio, Guardian Media Group, Haymarket Media Group, Incisive Media, Independent New Ventures, IPC Media, ITV, The National Magazine Company, News International Ltd, PPA, Reed Business Information, Telegraph Media Group Ltd, Thomson Reuters, Trader Media, Trinity Mirror, TSL Education, Which?

Published on: 4:23PM on 15th January 2010