CNBC (NYSE: GE), looking to capture a wider share of growing digital and mobile ad dollars, has named veteran sales exec Lou Tosto to head up its advertising in those areas. Tosto most recently finished a year-long stint at Linkstorm. But he is probably better known for the time he spent at Smart Money and BusinessWeek.
After working on the ad agency side in the mid-1980s, Tosto joined Dow Jones’ Barron’s in 1987. Six years later, he landed at Smart Money, where he started as NY advertising manager, eventually becoming online general manager for SmartMoney.com. He became VP of ad sales, east region, for BusinessWeek in 2002. He left in 2009 to join ad technology provider Linkstorm.
Tosto begins his new role as SVP, digital and mobile advertising sales immediately. The news comes as NBC Universal is expected to go through a huge management shakeup this week in advance of the still-pending merger between it and Comcast (NSDQ: CMCSA).
While the broadcast side has slowly seen its revenues come back from a deep slide during the depths of the recession, NBCU’s cable properties have generally performed well. Still, CNBC faces challenges along with everyone else to drive ad revenues during what is still a period of deep economic uncertainty. But unlike most general media outlets, that uncertainty has paid off in in terms of viewership and web visitors, as CNBC.com’s traffic has risen 15 percent since September 2010 to 5.5 million in October.
In the meantime, CNBC recently launched a new news blog, NetNet with John Carney, and has already gotten a “real-time” news app preinstalled on the forthcoming Google (NSDQ: GOOG) TV system, as part of a period of stepped up digital activity by the financial news network. Release