In a time when some networks are hurting for ad support, the Gospel Music Channel is living out its mantra of spreading good news. During the past year, GMC has catapulted from 18.5mln to 45mln subscribers and doubled its VOD viewership. Cathy Applefeld Olson sat down with Mary Jeanne Cavanagh, evp, ad sales, to get her insight on how Gospel is working to keep its demanding advertising clients happy.

GMC is on a roll bringing in new high-profile advertisers.

MJC: We now have over 60 national advertisers and have broken key categories. McDonald’s just joined us in the first quarter, breaking the QSR category. A lot of the insurance companies are on air, Disney Theme Parks and Verizon Wireless have joined, and we have automotive. We just finished negotiating another deal with Lincoln.

What’s behind the shift? Do you think more viewers are tuning in during these tough economic times, and advertisers are trying to find new places to reach them?

MJC: We offer hope. Our network is about feeling good about yourself, and a lot of clients are seeing value in reaching our audience in an environment that’s family-friendly. We did a survey with the Online Testing Exchange (OTX), and almost two-thirds of panelists agreed faith helps them to keep a positive attitude in tough times. And more people are seeking inspirational media.

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