NBC Lays Off Promo Staffers Nationwide; Makes Reporters Flack Their Stories

We're getting tips that NBC Universal is laying off the creative services staffs—the people that make those awful "news at 11" promo spots—at all of its stations nationwide, and will start producing all promos out of New York.

NBC owns ten stations across the country, and each has its own crew of people to produce promo spots. But a tipster writes:

Starting September 18th the layoffs will begin, and go through all the NBC stations, with a new group being dropped every two weeks. All marketing departments will be gone well before the end of the year. Logs, bag & tag, and all promo activities will be hubbed through a boutique agency in New York. News staffers will take over creation of all topical promotion in prime, and any promotion that requires onsite footage.

Blogger Well Dunne caught wind of the layoffs at NBC's Dallas station, and has also heard that they will be repeated nationwide. And a TV news insider told us he had heard of imminent layoffs at WNBC's creative services department in New York. We called NBC for confirmation, and they released this statement:

We're making some strategic changes to our Creative Services function, creating a new kind of marketing approach that better reflects the demands of today's local media marketplace. In the new organization, creative services executives at each station will determine their local market branding campaigns and promotion strategies, working closely with a newly formed media and planning strategy group, a division-wide sales marketing team, and an award winning outside creative agency.

An NBC executive declined to say how many will be laid off, and said that creative services executives will remain at each station. News employees will be expected to produce promos for their own stories, meaning that in addition to serving NBC News' newsgathering function, they will also be required to flack for their stations and essentially work in marketing for NBC Universal.