Tagged with " Bill Hartnett"
“Five Minutes With” Friday again…today we talk to BARRY FITZSIMMONS, an author, writer, producer, editor, creator, strategist, brainstormer, storyteller, podcaster and marketing man with a very exciting track record. Companies he’s worked with include ESPN, MLB Network, Studio City, NBC, CNBC …. you get the idea. His two books are Promo Cowboy and Life Askew.
So you’re the Promo Cowboy. What is a promo cowboy? A “promo cowboy” is a person who is devoted to a career in TV promotion, branding, marketing and/or content creation, and finds himself (or herself) skipping often from job to job, or town to town, in order to make a living at it. There are hundreds of us in New York alone. Maybe thousands. And when you count the cowboys in all 50 states, plus Canada… well, that’s a movement.
I gotta make one thing clear, though – despite the fact that my Twitter handle is @promocowboy, I am not the original Promo Cowboy. That was Greg Trimble, a fellow New York freelancer I’d known back in the 90s, who had this vibe, this persona, sort of like a cowboy. I think many of us cultivate a sort of persona, especially in New York, where it’s more challenging to stand out – it’s part of the reinvention process when you go from job to job and climb the ladder… every character in my novel, Promo Cowboy, shares this trait.
Anyway, Greg was a hell of a guy, and he died of a terrible, debilitating illness. Promo Cowboy, the novel, is an attempt to commemorate Greg, and to document our end of the industry. I mean, there have been some really important, dramatic and funny stories told about TV news, chiefly on film (Network, Broadcast News, Groundhog Day, Anchor Man), but Promo Cowboy may be the first to focus on TV marketing & promotion – plus, it has a serial killer, so… Yeah, my little TV-industry expose morphed into a crime drama (sequels are in the works!) as well as a podcast about working in TV marketing and promos. Makes total sense, right?
Best part of being your own boss…. It’s more about control than freedom. I often say that the idea of being your own boss is more alluring than the actual practice. I’m independent by nature, and I enjoy the freedom of being a cowboy, but that freedom is elusive, and illusive. I have a family to feed and a home to pay for. The truth is, as Promo Cowboy says, you gotta hustle and never stop. Here it is, the last days of summer, and I’d sure like a day at the beach, only I got clients to look after! Still, as a freelance promo producer in New York, you’re going to make more money than the guys on staff – a lot more, depending on how you position yourself.
My first big break was: Freshly graduated from BU’s film school, I am offered a position as Office PA on ABC’s Spenser: For Hire, filmed on location in Boston. I work 15-hour days, make coffee, make copies, answer phones, open and close the place (FILO). I make $50 a day and love it. Soon, I am on location with the crew and work even longer days, most of them outdoors, at wintery New England locations, freezing my ass off. I make $75 a day and love it.
Favorite way to jumpstart a stalled creative streak: Walk away. Bring a pad or use the voice record app and have a stream-of-consciousness conversation with yourself about the message you’re trying to get across, why it matters. Study the masters. Watch a classic film. Pray for clarity. If you’re the creative director, gather the team in front of a white board. Make the quietest person in the room say what he or she thinks – they always have something good to contribute.
Best quick office-type energy boost is: Eat an apple. Drink some coffee. Tea works too. Get outside. Take purposeful, copious breaths of oxygenated air, in through the nose – machine rooms are also great for that, the air is ionized.
Tech you use most in your job that you never thought you’d use: Before 2005 or so, I never expected I’d become an editor. Now I use Final Cut Express to cut my podcast. Best hundred bucks I ever spent. I love losing track of time when I’m editing something I believe in, where I’m the client, when I’m chasing a vision and getting closer with each keystroke. It’s sort of like writing a novel. It feels more like sex than work.
Latest campaign or spot you worked on and for whom: “Unstoppable,” Major League Baseball’s Postseason campaign for 2016, which has just begun running cross-channel on Fox, ESPN, TNT, MLB Network, etc. The campaign was designed by the great group at Oishii. Baseball fans will, I hope, come to love Sia’s latest single, which is the base track.
Favorite commercial or promo of all time: Hmmm… Guess I gotta go with Apple’s 1984 ad. I remember where I was when it aired, watching the Super Bowl in the common room at my dorm, a brownstone on Bay State Road in Boston. Changed the world, that ad did.
You made the switch from affiliate marketing to more…how did you do that? Sheer will, a few lucky breaks, maybe a little talent. That first gig on Spenser: For Hire lasted three years, and on hiatus I worked on commercials and features like Field of Dreams and Prancer, but I didn’t have the stomach for the film business. I started in on my first novel, Life Askew, and moved to Manhattan, and dreamed of living the writer’s life. Then, somehow, I landed a job writing and producing promos for Chris Spencer at The Comedy Channel (the network we now know as Comedy Central), then HBO & Cinemax. From there I moved into local and then network TV promos.
The thing is, all my jobs have been short-lived. I’ve never had a serious gig last longer than three years. I’ve jumped from cable nets to local stations, big networks and back, all in Greater New York City (aside from extended freelance stints in Philly for KYW, and Bristol for ESPN, and by then I’d moved my family to Connecticut). I have spent two separate three-year stints working for Frank Radice and Bill Hartnett at NBC News Marketing, and I would have chained myself to the radiator if it meant I could stay. Seriously, there is no more exciting place to work than 30 Rock – that building has a pulse to it. I was just there for a couple weeks, helping my friends at MSNBC during the conventions. Anyway, it feels like I’ve worked everywhere in this town, but there are still a few mountains to climb. Hello, Viacom?
You have 10 minutes to kill online. What sites do you visit? I’m so boring… Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, Linkedin, ESPN, HuffPo, Netflix (to update my watch list). The internet is more a tool than a toy for me.
Who would you like to spend “Five Minutes With”? Jesus Christ Himself
Mark Your Calendars and hats off to Raycom who is bringing attention to the devastating floods that have inundated Louisiana. No, a flood just doesn’t ‘go away’…the heartbreak lingers and the losses are incalculable. September 5, Labour Day, all Raycom stations and Bounce TV affiliates will broadcast a live concert hosted by Harry Connick, Jr and Randy Jackson featuring a dozen artists performing at Baton Rouge’s River Center Theatre. Called Louisiana Rising: A Benefit Concert for Flood Relief, it’s slated to run from 8/7 to 10/9 (Eastern and Central) and help out our brothers and sisters whose lives have been so horribly impacted. Well Dunne! to all the Raycom people at each of their stations and thanks LEC COBLE for the info.
Think About This: “The simplest acts of kindness are by far more powerful then a thousand heads bowing in prayer.” ~ Mahatma Gandhi
Copyright 2016 © Kate Bacon / Well Dunne! Talent
It takes a lot of guts to bet on your own talents. And there’s nothing more rewarding, even when the rewards can be a bit tight monetarily. Creatives in entertainment marketing have all the know-how, verve and knowledge to make an amazing impact on their own. The latest intrepid soul to shake things up is BRAD CRUM, now doing business under his own banner: Brad Crum Creative. He’s got it goin’ on in all mediums, so hit him up for work that will definitely work. He will, indeed, miss the good folks at FOX DC where he’s been promoting both their stations. Brad’s background includes time at CBS Network in LA. Yeah, he’s that good. Well Dunne! Brad.
Cinco de Mayo…what a great excuse to bring attention to two of the best Spanish/English voice talents you could use….Liliana de Miguel, who lives in Mexico City and translates like someone who works at the University, which she does….and Chris Smith who lives in Houston AND DF (which is how the folks in Mexico City refer to themselves). Don’t get stung with bad talent or bad translations. Happy Cinco…or as MANNY DE LA ROSA would say, Cinco de Manny!
Our own Promo Cowboy, BARRY FITZSIMMONS, who is amazing on so many creative levels, has finally gotten his marketing Podcast going (someone writing this might be a guest one day….) and you should check it out. Click here. And it’s a good one with BILL HARTNETT…another major favorite!
Have you noticed the A-listers who are voicing spots…not appearing on camera, but voicing? God bless Ken Levine, one of my favorite writers (imdb him) and his take on why this is NOT a good idea and why you need to rethink voice choices. Of course, you should think Well Dunne! first, but you know that already because you’re fabulous….
Think About This: “Thou shalt not be a victim, thou shalt not be a perpetrator, but, above all, thou shalt not be a bystander.” – Yehuda Bauer
Copyright 2016 © Kate Bacon / Well Dunne! Talent
Being VP and Creative Director of Integrated Marketing and Affiliate Promotion for ABC Family Channel was all very well and good. But now JEFFREY WEINSTOCK has switched gears into a faster lane (can one mix that metaphor and/or cliche?). Jeffrey’s been tapped to be VP and Creative Director of Integrated Marketing at ABC Television. Excellent! Jeffrey has been Director of Creative Services at San Francisco’s KRON as well as Manager of Affiliate Marketing for The WB TV Network. Let’s hear it for the Northwestern grad. Well Dunne! Jeffrey!
Job Alert – CSD KOAA Colorado Springs
Our Marketing Director is leaving to start her own branding firm and now we need YOU to take over the reins and keep building on our success. There’s no place more beautiful to live than Colorado Springs and no station better than #1 KOAA5, the Cordillera-owned NBC affiliate in the shadow of Pikes Peak.
If your ideas are big and bold, and you can show us something we haven’t seen a million times before, you’ll be leading an exceptional team of award-winning creatives and have the equipment and the budget to make amazing work happen every single day for the station, our viewers, and our clients. You’ll also be able to shoot and edit your own work to bring your vision to reality.
- Must be able to manage, coach, and consistently improve performance from producers and graphic designer.
- Ability to express ideas clearly, be open to changes, and execute at a very high level.
- Must be able to represent KOAA5 with clients, viewers, and community leaders.
- Highly organized and comfortable building and staying with long-range plans.
- Ability to shoot video and edit proficiently in Adobe Premiere Pro.
- Ability to manage community affairs efforts.
- Must be able to adhere to deadlines in a fast-paced, fluid work environment.
- Must be flexible and willing to work nights and weekends when necessary.
To apply for this position, please send your resume and a link to your reel to Evan Pappas, President and General Manager, at email@example.com. KOAA is an equal opportunity employer.
Job Alert – CSD KMGH Denver
Job Alert – CSD Palm Springs
Another excellent article by promo pro BILL HARTNETT. Enjoy.
Anybody have any thoughts on Amazon’s ‘experiment’ to see how far they can push white collar workers? The NYTimes had it front and center this weekend
Think About This: "Outside show is a poor substitute for inner worth." ~ Aesop
Copyright 2015 © Kate Bacon / Well Dunne! Talent
If one is good, and two is twice as good, then three is over the moon. Three is the magic number for WJXT’s CSD SHERRY CARPENTER, who has added some fab talent to her team in Jacksonville. We’ll let her and her new hires take over (I’ll put my feet up and fix a margarita today…bonus!):
BRANDON LINK: “I hail from WVVA! A station tucked away in Southern WV. I went from Master control, Commercial producer to Promotion manager in a little under 2 years. Before I stumbled into TV, I played football for the Pittsburgh Power in the AFL (Arena football league). I am originally from Cumberland, MD. I’ve been playing guitar for 12 years, and I have a 4 yr old black lab/pit mix named Nina! I’m probably the biggest/scariest looking Promotion Producer in the country!” (Take what you like from that. Haha.)
STUART BOSLOW is the new Executive Producer of a daily talk and entertainment show on WJXT, launching later this year. Stuart joined the station from Dallas, where he launched a talk and lifestyle show at KTXD. Previously he was Senior Special Projects Producer at KTVT.
Just hired today, as in Tuesday! RYAN DOLBY was our intern, and was hired to help support production of 3 weekly Jacksonville Jaguars shows. As the official station of our NFL Franchise team, folks in creative services help produce the coaches show, Everbank Jaguars Gameday, and Jaguars All Access. Ryan has a Bachelor’s Degree in Communication, Concentration in production from University of North Florida.
Job Alert – Sherry and Stuart are working frantically to hire 7 more people– co-hosts, MMJ’s, producers, bookers and tech support. Check out Graham Media’s WJXT’s job postings.
Sincere condolences to PHIL KRAFT, Senior Creative Producer for KGTV in San Diego, on the loss of his Grandmother.
EXCELLENT read…BILL HARTNETT’s blog entitled Social TV Grows Up and Gets Real.
Changes are as hot as the temps…tomorrow we tell about the new CSD at WNCN in Raleigh and have great news about a favorite with a syndicated show. And the already promised details on the lovely new KXAN CSD will be forthcoming. Plus a real find for DAVID HERSHEY at KTVT. Come back – bring salt.
Oh, this is the 1625th post of WDT’s focus on the people of TV marketing. How fast the children grow…
Think About This: "Failure is a bruise, not a tattoo.” ~ Jon Sinclair
Copyright 2015 © Kate Bacon / Well Dunne! Talent
Love has been in the air – can you feel it? Making an early appearance, Cupid has beat the groundhog by several weeks, no doubt bringing about one such happy love event from the left coast. A wedding! All best wishes for ‘happily ever-aftering’ go to PETER NOLL, who tied the knot with this partner. Peter is Director Affiliate Marketing and Promotion for ABC out in Burbank. Smiles to you two! Well Dunne!
Well Dunne! Talent’s HARRY LEGG is a major martial arts guy. He loves it – and is pretty good at it. All said because he was in NYC Sunday night – and the mugger who jumped him from behind found out just how good Harry is with self-defense. Wow. Harry is 1,000% OK. He didn’t even sound nervous. Lesson – Don’t mess with him. Well Dunne! Harry.
Two blogs of interest for you. First, BILL HARTNETT’S World On Shuffle. Bill is uber fab and his writings about freelancing and work in today’s ever-changing biz environment are well worth the time. Check it out. And second, here’s a site for both the creator and the client from NatGeo & NatGeo WILD SVP Creative ANDY BAKER. In this case, the name doesn’t say it all, since the blog name is The Client Blog. It’s way more than than that. I’m lovin’ it. Just click and enjoy.
Think About This: "You are an Angel, and your life is your message." ~ Don Miguel Ruiz
BEAR FISHER is still with NBC (where they love her) but in a new role. She’s now SVP Marketing and Brand Strategy for NBCU Television & New Marketing and NBCU Domestic Television Distribution divisions. Whew…that is quite the title! Bear had been Senior Vice President, Brand Strategy and Creative Director for now-shuttered Style Network. The UConn grad has also handled on-air for E! and FX. Well Dunne! Bear.
Job Alert – Producer/Shooter/Editor WHNT Huntsville
Job Alert – On-Air Promotions Producer WWE Stamford CT job 2013-3072
Job Alert – PROMOTION MANAGER-SAN ANTONIO
Sinclair – San Antonio’s KABB (FOX29) and KMYS (CW35), is looking for a talented Promotion Manager with a background marketing news. You need to have at least 3-5 years prior television promotion and marketing experience. You’ll lead/supervise a talented creative team, plan station events, push the brand on social media, and work closely with the Creative Services Director on strategy and execution across all media. Hands-on creative skills and innovative campaign/spot examples required. Experience working with outside agencies to place media is a plus.
You must apply online to be considered at www.sbgi.net
The uber-talented BILL HARTNETT wrote an AOL Jobs article about networking that is well worth your time. Click and learn, grasshoppers.
Speaking of work, this article is definitely worth your time. It’s about how to make the workplace one in which employees actually like their jobs, as opposed to being unhappy and thus a drag on the goals. http://bigthink.com/big-think-edge/half-the-workforce-hate-their-jobs-heres-3-ways-that-can-change
Think About This: (A repeat, but so beautiful) “I am a little pencil in the hand of a writing God who is sending a love letter to the world.” ~ Mother Teresa
Saying nice things about BRIAN BLUM isn’t just easy – it’s a treat. Prepare yourselves, since Brian is the focus of today’s WDTB (which would make great call letters, in case that ever comes up…). Mr. B, who is VP of Creative Services at Fox’s NYC operation, aka WNYW, is going to retiring and moving back to his west coast digs, which is where his family has been calling home for quite some time. Brian has been with Foxny for the last 10 years and was with CBS’ KPIX in San Francisco before that. Just like a Cosmo article, he and his wife did a bi-coastal marriage, which is a feat unto itself. Come the end of this month, he’ll be in the same zip code nightly and enjoying the best weather in the country. The timing is perfect – he’s already closed on his NY condo so the signs all point to “right track”. His stellar career path included getting his foot in as producer at WBBM in Chicago, then going on to be Promo Manager at Philly’s WCAU and Director of Marketing and Program Development at Miami’s WFOR. Brian is the go-to guy for marketing direction and, despite the fact we know he’ll be very very happy, he will be missed. BTW, Brian was the very first person to sign up to get the WDTB and he will forever be a favorite of mine! A huge Well Dunne! Brian.
Ending the summer in a totally fabulous way – marketing guru BILL HARTNETT. He and his lovely wife have welcomed a new little one into the world. Kudos for those who didn’t think let alone utter ‘now that’s taking labor day literally’.
Well, fall is really here. They’re serving Pumpkin Latte’s at Starbucks and there’s a few Christmas things for sale on shelves in between all the Halloween candy.
A sweet and happy Hebrew New Year 5774.
Think About This: “If you are falling….dive.” ~ Joseph Campbell
This is good news indeed….the wonderfully talented BILL HARTNETT just got named Executive Vice President at Current TV. Fireworks are in order…because Current is such a smart outfit to pick him. No word yet about his moving to Current’s San Francisco locale from the NYC area or if Bill will stay in the Apple. Bill’s former title was SVP of NBC News Marketing and before that, he was VP of the NBC Agency at 30 Rock. The Washington State grad started his TV career in Seattle and has been a writer/producer at NYC’s WWOR TV. Oh yeah, he’s done kick-it freelance creative for HBO, Bravo, Fox and more. A huge Well Dunne! Bill. Can’t wait to hear more about this exciting new chapter.
Think About This: "To abolish all valleys is to get rid of all mountains." ~ Alan W. Watts
Making the switch from consultant to staff is ROSIE PISANI, who is now the SVP of Marketing for WEtv and Wedding Central. NY based Rosie has been helping out for the last few months and came up with their position line: “Life as WE Know It.” The St. Johns alum is already on the job. Well Dunne! Rosie.
With February upon us, a book beginning, ice keeping people inside, it amazes me that so many creative slots are still open. To my knowledge, still available are the following:
CSD at WJXT@Jacksonville, KCCI@ DesMoines, WTAE@ Pittsburgh (Go Steelers!), WGRZ@ Buffalo, KCTV@ KC, WIS@ Columbia SC, KVOA@ Tucson…Promotion Manager at WTTG@ DC, WALA@ Mobile, KCWE@ KC, WTAE@ Pittsburgh (Go Steelers!)…News Promo Manager at WBZ Boston, Marketing Manager at KPTM Omaha, Marketing Director at WTVR Richmond, Ass’t CSD at KHBS Ft Smith.
Well Dunne! Talent’s HARRY LEGG has a Cairo radio station on his list. The Nile FM has a 4 million cume and they’re still broadcasting despite the confusion in Egypt’s capital.
Future of TV? Check it out. And thanks BILL HARTNETT for the heads up.
With all that’s happening weather-wise, the bloom seems to be a bit off the Super Bowl commercial rose this year. However, the spots in The Big Game will still carve out some cutting edge approaches, like this one from FOX Studios.
Pet lovers…here’s a very heart warming story about a Sarasota couple’s generosity.
Think About This: "You do not have to like what is going on in your life, but you must accept that it, whatever it is, is going on. As long as you do not accept reality, you are powerless to define the role you will play. Failure to accept reality is a denial of your power to make a conscious choice. When you do not choose, you live by default. You are a victim of circumstances." ~ Iyanla Vanzant
The Writers Guild knows great promo writing when they read it, hear it or see it…and that means the award given out Saturday night to BARRY FITZSIMMONS is all that more special. Wow…a WGA Award. His win is in the On Air Promotion/Radio or Television category. The promo so honored was for Dateline’s show Vegas Undercover. Barry is not just a promo man of great repute, who is now writing and producing top of the line material for NBC in NYC – he’s also an author. Yep, he’s written one book entitled Life Askew (think Confederacy of Dunces) and is about to publish a second, Promo Cowboy. Totally great title. Barry is a California guy who came east and stayed, having worked in Boston, gotten a degree from BU then did episodic TV before finding promo work, which is so much more fun. Mr. F thanks HBO’s CHRIS SPENCER for helping him make the switch. Well Dunne! Barry. Remember I want to get an autographed copy of Promo Cowboy when you’re ready. Ps – thanks to BILL HARTNETT of NBC for getting me in touch.
Must apologize that the fates got in the way of me posting this great spot. Trying to put it up on Facebook. If you aren’t on the Facebook list, now’s the perfect time.
The Academy Awards are coming up, and for TV watchers, that means TCM is doing their annual "31 Days of Oscar”. All the best movies everyday. TCM turned to Hollywood-based yU+co for a knock-out promo spot. They do tons of movie graphics, like for Tooth Fairy which just opened. Bossman GARSON YU got his creative team of graphic designers, motion graphics pros and editors busy and their efforts can be seen on TCM for the next two weeks. Check it out.
Job Alert for those who are not that thrilled with TV anymore: Director of Communications for the Kansas City Chiefs
Pretty straight forward, no holds barred assessment of Lifetime Network from the LA Times.
Yes, advertising DOES work!
Think About This: "It’s important to live life with the experience, and therefore the knowledge, of its mystery and of your own mystery. This gives life a new radiance, a new harmony, a new splendor. Thinking in mythological terms helps to put you in accord with the inevitable of this vale of tears. You learn to recognize the positive values in what appear to be the negative moments and aspects of your life. The big question is whether you are going to be able to say a hearty yes to your adventure." ~ Joseph Campbell