Editor's Note: The Separation of Church and Pews
This is the very reason that when I took over as editor of Publishing Executive and Book Business magazines I brought the Publishing Business Conference in-house. (The conference program had previously been outsourced to a freelance planner.) The conference content needed to be in line with and meet the editorial quality standards of the print products. Hence, the editorial staff should oversee it. The impact was immediate and extremely positive. That may sound boastful, but I'm not saying I'm brilliant, just that I used common sense.
Our sales team sells our print and digital products, and our events (live and virtual). Unfortunately, not all companies see the benefits in this. Many companies are flat-out leaving big money on the table, because they have a separate digital "team," with few, if any, people dedicated to digital sales (they're often focused on development in new platforms; but selling?), and/or the print sales team has no financial incentive to sell digital ad space. Some print publications have millions of dollars in print advertising and awesome, valuable websites with major traffic (also in or near the millions), and the Web ad revenue has yet to exceed $100,000. This is just inconceivable to me.
Especially considering the demand among marketers for multiplatform campaigns, integrating your print and digital brands' sales staff is essential today, and is going to become even more so as products expand further into the mobile space.
I understand that certain people within every company will be the tech leaders, investigating and recommending new technologies to move the publication/company forward (hopefully) into the modern marketplace, but the editors and sales teams still should be behind what is developed for and sold on those new technologies. If your print and digital teams are separate, I'd give this some serious thought.