Seven West Media has appointed former Yahoo!7 executive Dan Stinton, as head of digital for West Australian Newspapers and Seven Perth.
From November, Mr Stinton will step into the role that was newly created as part of SWN’s ongoing integration of its television and newspaper newsrooms.
Mr Stinton was formerly director of business development and affiliates at Yahoo!7
“I feel I know the town well and I know The West Australian and Seven Perth’s place in it,” Perth-born Mr Stinton said.
“It’s really now about how to leverage [the newsroom integration] and trying to make sure it’s not just two teams sitting in the same room together. It’s two teams producing for digital at every opportunity and really working together.”
SWM merged the West Australian Newspapers and Channel Seven Perth businesses and newsrooms early this year with a view to create new cross-platform publishing opportunities and encouraging collaboration.
The new role will consolidate already existing responsibilities and cover new areas of digital development.
Mr Stinton is hesitant to comment in detail about his plans but said his priorities would be developing social, mobile and video audiences and opportunities.
“On the social side of things, the audience is comparatively quite small to some of the competitors and that’s really just a reflection on the fact that The West hasn’t invested in social massively so far,” Mr Stinton said.
“I guess another obvious part is there hasn’t really been investment in mobile. Now, to some extent The West has got some of that by default because Yahoo!7 has built responsive websites and the like and The West has benefited from that because they utilise their technology.”
Before the merger of West Australian Newspapers and Seven Media Group, Mr Stinton as then head of news helped facilitate a deal that saw Yahoo!7 provide technological solutions and build one of the first websites for The West.
Mr Stinton is keen to rekindle old connections with staff at The West. However he said the decision to take the role has “probably been the most difficult decision professionally I’ve ever had to make”.
A little over a year ago, Mr Stinton resigned from Yahoo!7 to co-found a wine and beverage wholesale dotcom start-up called eBev.
“Running a start-up is a roller-coaster obviously. Some days you feel like you can conquer the universe, the next day it’s the most stupid idea you’ve ever had,” Mr Stinton said.
“It’s been very, very difficult to leave [eBev]. Now that said, it’s going to keep going and I’m going to remain an investor.
Mr Stinton said it was an exciting time for Seven West Media, with many improvements to come.
“There’s a great team there already and I’m looking forward to joining that team to help shape its digital future.