Entries Tagged as 'media'

a trend that impacts your salary


As this blog is “where the worlds of voice over, marketing and advertising collide” I try and make sure individual posts cover one or more of those areas each week. This post covers all three.

If you earn your living as a voice talent, a marketer (for your own company or on behalf of someone else) or in advertising (either for yourself or someone else) there is a trend developing that you need to think about. Why?

Because it affects how much money you’re going to make in the future. Think mortgage payments, new cars and education.

With me now?

Double click on the chart below and then click back for some thoughts.

Newpaper, Internet Trends via Pew Research

That chart is part of a much more in-depth study produced in August, 2008 by the Pew Research Center for People and The Press. Maybe its stuff you thought was happening and maybe it even reflects your personal changes. But this is now quantifiable. And that means a lot to how we all make our livings. Pay attention:

You have just read a 15 year trend in media usage, specifically how people get their news.
* 24% fewer people in that time period get their news from newspapers
* 12% fewer people get their news from the radio
* 31% fewer people watch the nightly network news
* On line and cable news consumption is through the roof

This is about more than just news, I think. This is a game changer for people who work in media (including voice over), marketing and advertising. Most are dealing with this and thousands of pages of similar data already but I’m guessing you may not be, so let us ruminate for a moment, shall we?

Let’s just for the sake of this post take out concerns of the bias of cable news outlets as it affects their presentation of the news to the growing majority of American cable news consumers and how that impacts how people think, act and vote about issues of the day. Great topic and just considering it gets your head to throbbing but back away from it just for this discussion.

Let’s do say you’re a voice talent and you’ve been charging $200 for a :30 second commercial on local broadcast television and $150 or even $100 for cable TV spots because there are fewer viewers. Survey says that number is changing a bit (though broadcast ratings are still higher). Should you consider changing your cable fees? Is that change justified? Survey says maybe.

Let’s say you’re in advertising and you’ve been specializing in print ads which mostly go in newspapers or you’ve been doing lots of radio spots on news talk stations. Shouldn’t you at least reconsider either your primary business services or your media recommendation to clients? Survey says it’s probably worth some brainstorming.

Let’s say you’re in marketing for a grocery store and you do weekly inserts with specials and temporary price reductions and the like. Has coupon redemption gone up or down on those inserts? Any reasons you know of for a change? Survey says maybe.

Let’s say you are a consumer that can be influenced by commercials you see on cable TV, print ads or weekly grocery store inserts (we’d all like to say “not me” but we’d be lying). Could your buying habits be impacted by this change in media usage? After all, you’re the one changing the usage. What if you’re not finding out about all these new special offers because the media vendors haven’t changed their marketing plans for their clients? Clients whose products you normally buy or would consider buying.

The point is not that any of these industries need to play catch up because that’s what we’re all doing everyday anyway. A trend arises and we react. Tuesday go left. Wednesday go right. Thursday is too far away to consider.

The point is to be aware that there are very specific changes in media usage. This information is but one small part.

But do you comprehend the change? Do you even feel it, maybe? Is the change impacting the way you do business? Should it change the way you do business?

Is it impacting the way you buy things? Does it alter your opinion of brands? Could it alter the opinions of consumers of your brand?

That box below here is where the discussion begins…be a part of it, now. Thanks.

shallow times and shallow people

As every business owner in voice over, marketing or advertising has either used public relations for their benefit or their clients’ benefit or has been on the receiving end of a PR campaign at some level, I thought you’d find the recent experience of Michael Arrington of Tech Crunch interesting.

He received this email very recently:

From: Vanity Fair / Google
Date: August 27, 2008 9:06:32 PM PDT
To: Michael Arrington
Subject: IMPT: Google/Vanity Party Status
Reply-To: demconventionparty@google.com
Thank you for your interest in the Vanity Fair / Google Party.

We have reached full capacity for this event and are unable to accommodate additional guests.

If you have NOT received a Confirmation email–separate from the automated RSVP response– and a Party admission card with your name on it, you will not be admitted to the party. No exceptions.

If you HAVE received a confirmation email but have NOT picked up your admission card, you must reference your confirmation instructions and pick up your card by 4:00pm on Thursday. Admission cards will not be distributed at the door.

If you use the shuttle service you must have your party admission card to board. No exceptions.

Thank you in advance for your understanding,

Vanity Fair & Google Events team

Sad news for Michael, had he been wrangling an invitation or had he even been aware of the event. He had neither nor was he the lone perplexed recipient of that email.

But he did write about it….and so am I.

I’ll let you draw your own correlations between a publication the likes of Vanity Fair, celebrities and politicians (and please post them here as I know they’d make great reading).

My questions (which I also hope you’ll daine to answer) are the following: is any publicity really good publicity as the old axiom goes? As long as they spell my name right?

Maybe the publicity trick fits Vanity Fair’s branding but does it fit Google’s? Obviously the message is exclusivity but is it also awareness? Would you be willing to pull such a stunt (and make no mistake, this is a stunt) with your brand? Why?

Please open your blue book and use only your No. 2 pencil to write your essay answer. You have one hour.

Begin 😉

print isn’t dead, it’s just not as papery

newspaper stack

If you’re running a newspaper or working for one, there have been many times in your career where you’ve felt your job may be threatened.

The two biggies, it would seem to me, would be when television became popular and then in more recent times with the advent of the internet. If I’d worked on a printing press for any amount of time, I think I would have had or be experiencing some sleepless nights when considering the impact of those two communication channels.

And if you are graduating as a journalism student this spring, I’m guessing you also set yourself up with a pretty strong minor in case the writing and reporting thing doesn’t work out.

To wit: the editors of the trade magazine Editor and Publisher report the following major newspapers all lost circulation in daily and Sunday subscriptions: The Washington Post, New York Post, Los Angeles Times, San Francisco Chronicle and Boston Globe. Of the top 25 newspapers only the Wall Street Journal and USA Today gained daily circulation.

My uneducated guess would be that paid advertising in those papes might also be down as well.

We all still crave content but as consumers we seem to be caring less about packaging, more about convenience and still more about the delivery system. And oh yes, free is still better than not free. The internet is free. Paid internet subscriptions to news sites has pretty much failed as a business model with certain business publications like the Wall Street Journal being a notable exception. Even the New York Times is now free on line (it’s one of the best web layouts and I subscribe to it, for free).

In spite of the proliferation of gossip as news, most adults still want news…we want to know what’s going on in our cities and states and our nation. We have families to raise, homes to protect, knowledge to gain and print media plays a big role in collecting and sharing that information. They’ve just been slow in updating their delivery system from paper to electronic.

That switch is a game changer for the financially troubled newspaper industry. Some jobs will no longer be needed (pressmen, delivery truck drivers) and new jobs will be created (web programmers etc). All thru the change, these publishers are still responsible for getting the news out. Aren’t you glad you don’t have their business problems?

But we have a responsibility too, as news consumers. We are adapting and forcing the new delivery system of our news but we’re also blurring the news content lines.

What is news? Is your news the same as my news. If it’s not, how is a publisher to know what to publish and who to publish for? With the web, we can be very specific about what each of us decides is real news.

That’s a problem because we’re not all terribly judicious in our selections. According to a quick search today on Alexa.com, globally the top print-based news site on the web is the New York Times…coming in at #97! It was beat out by a ton of Google sites, You Tube, CNN, porn sites and ESPN.

We need to check (or install) our personal news filters (internal and external) to make sure we’re not keeping out hard news by focusing only soft topics we like (hobby sites, gossip etc). The internet and its tool can seduce us into stupidity if we let it (just as TV can and has). We WILL dumb ourselves down to the point of submission if we completely embrace our freedom of choice in news gathering to only the stuff that doesn’t trouble us.

We need to know some stuff we’d rather not know about (wars, crime, finance) too.

Thanks for reading.

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one of one hundred


I am resourceful or I am full of resource or possibly I am a source of re’s.

It’s all so confusing but this burdensome responsibility has been placed on me by the Ciccarelli family, they of Voices.com fame. Now with their GoodVoiceKeeping Seal of Approval I have to churn out internet content that’s valuable and important and vital to the voice over, marketing and advertising communities!!!

Oh crap!

Well page through my archives, listen to my voxmarketising podcast, learn anything you want but just please take off your shoes before you come in as I just vacuumed.

Thank you.

twitter in plain english


The talented LeFever family (husband Lee and wife Sachi) have produced another Common Craft show that often explains services in social media more clearly and creatively than I’ve found anywhere.

They’ve done it again, this time all about Twitter.

I (audioconnell) am still figuring out how this tool can work for me and I wouldn’t say I am active with it but I am trying to see how it fits with me and I fit with it.

But the fun is in the trying and, because of the Common Craft show, the learning. Enjoy.

attention guidance counselors: on-air careers in radio are very dead


If you know the medical or psychological term for the feeling you get when you watch a function or service or job you really have an abiding passion and respect for just be ripped apart agonizingly slowly and painfully, please let me know.

Because that’s the word I would use to describe what all voice talents and on-air radio staffers have been feeling watching radio’s long enduring death spiral. I think we’re closer to the last third of the spiral than the first third of the spiral now though. The money is really running out for broadcast companies.

Not to harp on all the reasons most of us in the business know about but in case you don’t, radio listenership and usage is way down, that brings down ratings and advertisers won’t pay for a less useful marketing channel. The competition in the media world is too big. And radio companies over paid for their properties and are saddled with mind numbing debt.

Sales people (many of whom are hired as a first job out of college and are directed to a telephone and a phone book and ordered to “sell!”) aren’t coming up with the ad dollars.

The biggest line item in every budget is salaries. And the first people to get cut (excluding sales people but that’s always been a revolving door) are the on-air talent.

Clear Channel fired Rocky Allen at WPLJ and John Gambling on WOR both powerhouse stations in New York (the latest examples). Less known (but not necessarily less talented) names continue to be felled by HR in markets across the country. No one is safe and most sad of all is that the audience seems indifferent to the loss. There’s a full body paper cut for you.

I haven’t been on the air in years but it still remains one of my most favorite jobs. That and production director for a radio station. It was creative, it was fast, you interacted with the audience….that was a gift. If you’ve worked in radio, didn’t you feel the same way?

Sure, pay was lousy and you worked with a few idiots. But I have yet to see a job that didn’t have those issues…even now and I own my own companies!

But much of what was great about radio for those of us on air has changed. More syndicated programming covers our local airwaves with names like Delilah, John Tesh and Ryan Seacrest. Bland, awful stuff. But it costs less than local, real bodies running the board at your station.

Maybe I’m the only one who notices all this and who cares but if I’m not, I really would love to get your take (short or long) on all this. Angry? Resigned? Saddened? Frustrated? Past it? Let me know. Thanks.