CafeMedia Taps DotDash Meredith Executives to Unlock New Opportunities for Advertisers

Lauren Lauren Fitzpatrick

Marla Newman joins as Executive Vice President, Sales, and MaryRay Lombardo joins as Senior Vice President, Sales

NEW YORK, March 7, 2023 /PRNewswire/ — CafeMedia today announced Marla Newman, former President, Digital Sales–Lifestyle Group at DotDash Meredith, has joined the company as Executive Vice President of Sales. Newman will lead the company’s best-in-class sales organization and unlock a new 360 strategy that connects advertisers to its creators’ 195M monthly visitors. Joining Newman is the former Chief Revenue Officer, Retail/Food/Beverage at DotDash Meredith, MaryRay Lombardo. She joins the team as Senior Vice President, Sales, and will focus on building out the company’s sales offering alongside Newman and bringing it to market.

Lombardo will report directly to Newman, and Newman will report to CafeMedia’s Chief Strategy Officer, Paul Bannister.

“Marla is a trailblazer in running digital ad businesses and has an astute understanding of how to meet the needs of advertisers to ensure they reach their goals, and MaryRay’s track record and expertise in driving sales is unmatchable,” said Paul Bannister, Chief Strategy Officer, CafeMedia. “CafeMedia has built the preeminent creator-first company. With these two leaders at the helm of our ad sales organization, we’re positioned to chart new ways for creators and advertisers to unlock value at scale.”

Marla Newman, Executive Vice President, Sales, CafeMedia adds, “Consumer behaviors have been shifting for years now, and today, consumers look to the authentic voices of creators to entertain, educate, and inspire them. CafeMedia is the home to more than 4,000 of the internet’s best voices. We have a huge opportunity to unlock a new, groundbreaking relationship between advertisers and creators at scale, bringing more revenue to independent creators and more ease, opportunities, and return on investment to advertisers.”

“The creators who work with CafeMedia and AdThrive are trusted voices, premium content creators, and the forces behind the latest viral trends,” comments MaryRay Lombardo, Senior Vice President, Sales, CafeMedia. “They’re not only iconic brands but charismatic personalities. They captivate more than 70% of U.S. audiences on their sites alone and are trendsetters with the power to move and disrupt culture. I’m excited to reintroduce our incredible community to advertisers and unlock all-new ways they can tap into our unique relationship with the best creators on the internet.”

Newman, a 20-year digital media veteran, joins CafeMedia from DotDash Meredith, where she was President of Digital Sales–Lifestyle Group. Joining Meredith Corporation in 2016, she led all aspects of the digital team’s go-to-market strategy and execution for brand, agency, and holding company partners, doubling Meredith Corporation’s digital media business growth while creating a best-in-class sales organization of nearly 200 team members. She was also responsible for spearheading the largest strategic brand partnerships in the company’s history and an integral part of post-acquisition integrations during Meredith’s acquisition of Time Inc., and again during the company’s merger with DotDash. Prior to joining DotDash Meredith, Newman served as Global Head of Agency Development at AOL and Microsoft and held senior leadership roles at FOX Sports Digital, MTV Networks, and MSN. She is a graduate of the University of Oregon and a member of The Advertising Group of New York’s Board of Directors.

Before joining CafeMedia, Lombardo was the Chief Revenue Officer, Retail/Food/Beverage at DotDash Meredith. She began her career at Meredith Corporation following the company’s acquisition of Omnimedia/Martha Stewart Living, where she was responsible for building MSL’s digital business and growing it year-over-year for three consecutive years. At Meredith, Lombardo held a number of leadership roles and forged long-term relationships with Fortune 100 companies to drive multi-million dollar growth in her division for seven consecutive years. Before joining the leadership ranks at Meredith, she was named the company’s #1 Digital Producer both regionally and company-wide year after year. She began her career at CBS 2 in Chicago, and Undertone, and is a graduate of The University of Michigan. 

CafeMedia continues to grow rapidly with more ways to help creators grow their businesses and connect with advertisers. The company’s reach is now at an all-time high, landing the number seven spot on ComScore’s digital properties ranking with 191M visitors reached across its network of more than 4,000 creators. The company continues to attract the world’s best creators who are not only pioneers in their respective verticals but also shaping and innovating the future of digital media and community. From Half Baked Harvest and Feel Good Foodie to Inside the Magic and MacRumors, CafeMedia creators have founded some of the world’s most beloved online brands, and in addition to millions of loyal followers across their platforms, accolades include The New York Times Bestselling cookbooks, sold out speaking tours, critical acclaim from top press outlets and global brand partnerships, to name just a few.

About CafeMedia

CafeMedia’s mission is to build a creator-first future. We empower the world’s best creators to grow thriving businesses for the long term. Under our CafeMedia and AdThrive brands, we manage digital advertising sales, technology, and a growing number of services for more than 4,000 creators. We make it easy for them to focus on what they do best — produce great content.

Our passion and expertise have made us a leader in advertising and creator services. Today we rank as the seventh-largest digital property in the U.S. and #1 in Food, Family, Home, and Lifestyle, with a reach of more than 191M monthly unique visitors in the U.S. alone.