The Fishbowl: Emma Newman, PubMatic

The Fishbowl: Emma Newman, PubMatic

The Media Leader’s interview series asks the media industry’s top salespeople 10 revealing questions, drawn from our fishbowl. The questions will be drawn at random and contain some tricky posers set by the commercial chiefs themselves.

This week is Emma Newman, chief revenue officer for EMEA at PubMatic.


Emma Newman started her career at Microsoft where she spent eight years. She then held various sales and leadership roles at AOL and Clear Channel UK.

She joined PubMatic in 2011, starting as senior director of marketing, international and working her way up to chief revenue officer.


**Peer question** If you were to acquire, or consolidate with another media/advertising company, which would it be?

Well, we (PubMatic) have recently acquired Martin, a media measurement and reporting platform with the aim of deepening the company’s investment in supply path optimization (SPO). So, I think I’ll focus on working with the team to ensure that that integration goes smoothly before worrying about anything else.

** Question from Dom Williams, chief revenue officer at Mail Metro Media.

Has selling media become easier or harder?

If I think about it from an ad tech perspective, it can look from the outside that it’s become harder — fragmentation, consolidation, new formats and platforms, concerns around transparency and responsible journalism — can make the industry difficult to understand and navigate.

On the other hand, because we’ve spent a lot of time ensuring that we are delivering a responsible supply chain, it is somewhat easier, as both our publishers and our buyers view us as a trusted partner and are happy to deepen their relationships with us.

What are clients talking about this year that they weren’t last year?

There’s a far greater emphasis on sustainability in all its guises with more of a focus on carbon reduction and shifting spending to publishers supporting underrepresented voices and communities, as well as those whose content promotes credible journalism and supports responsible publication ecosystems.

What is a unique skill you bring to your job?

I’d like to think that due to my many turns around the block, I have the experience to keep my team calm and focused when the outlook is uncertain. That, and the ability to touch type at 120 WPM, leading my team to believe that I respond to their emails before they’ve finished writing them.

**Peer question** In 2022, what job in the industry do you least envy and why?

I’m not sure I’d want to be Twitter’s head of HR at the moment — for obvious reasons.

** Question from Craig Tuck, chief revenue officer at Ozone.

If you could change one thing about your job, what would it be?

I’d like to be able to give more time to areas such as diversity, inclusion and environmental sustainability. PubMatic is very supportive here but there’s always more that can be done, I just need a few more hours in the day.

What’s your best advice for someone who wants a job in media sales?

Listen more than you speak — work with your customers to develop solutions that meet their needs rather than yours.

If you didn’t work in your current sector, which other media sector could you see yourself working in?

Book publishing, preferably focusing on murder mysteries and recipe books.

What’s been your biggest challenge this year and what are you doing about it?

Work related: hiring great talent has been a big challenge this year and we’ve worked hard as a business to raise our employer profile and broaden the diversity of our candidate pool.

Personally related: navigating the menopause. Thank goodness for hormone replacement therapy.

Which deal in your career are you proudest of?

The content deal brokered with a group of international footballers to support activity relating to the 2006 World Cup took my negotiation skills (and patience) to a whole new level.

More recently, my first large agency SPO deal has a place in my heart — it was a steep learning curve for me and a real lesson in listening more and speaking less (to the customer and your team who knew more about this than I did).


The Fishbowl is a weekly Q&A with the UK’s top commercial media salespeople. Check out recent interviews with DCM, Meta, Zee Entertainment, and Snap.

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