Media Champions with Cathy Cao of Objective, Investment Banking & Valuation

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On “Media Champions,” our host, Greg Kirkham, speaks with experts and professionals from across the country operating in the media space. In this segment, Greg spoke with Cathy Cao of Objective, Investment Banking & Valuation.

Short company description: 

Objective, Investment Banking & Valuation (“Objective”) is a leading investment banking and valuation firm that services middle market companies in select industries of focus: Business Services, Consumer, Healthcare Tech & Services, Life Sciences Services & Tech, Manufacturing & Distribution, and Technology. Within our industries of focus we offer an investment banking group providing sell-side advisory, and a full-service valuation group providing tax compliance, financial reporting, transaction opinion, and strategic advisory services. Founded in 2006, Objective’s seasoned professionals have collectively executed over 500 M&A advisory engagements and thousands of business valuations throughout their careers. Our firm’s name embodies our core mission: to help business owners achieve their objectives. Learn more and find additional resources at

Based out in Los Angeles, CA.

What was your first job in Media?

I started out as a Marketing Specialist at a big four commercial real estate brokerage working on pitch decks and email marketing for office leasing transaction advisory.

What is the biggest change in marketing that you see coming in the next 2 years?

 How AI and ML will change the role of the marketer

List any trade organizations or groups that you belong to, if any: 

She Runs It

Why is it important for a business to hire an outside ad agency as opposed to having just an internal marketing director?

Being an internal marketing director, I know how important it is to hire specialized outside agencies. You can’t be a jack of all trades and know your own limitations as a marketing director. A key part of your role is to determine which specializations are important to driving the value of the company, therefore stay internal. On the flip side, which ones are best to consult experts via an agency model because that need might also be evolving and the agency model gives you that flexibility.

What is one tip that you would give when it comes to digital marketing?

Always be learning. This is a field that is closely tied to social evolution, with the information age the marketer’s role is evolving as fast as the engineer’s role.

What percent of your advertising service offerings does traditional media buying make up?

Banking & Finance is an old school industry, I would say 20% is in traditional media.