bent and wary
of lies and mischief
A king appears
through laughs and tears
to break the curse
and the mold.
takes Adam the conniver
and they go for a walk
in the junifers.
They come back naked
lost and forsaked
and for the rest of their
memory we hate them.
Still, I’d like to meet
them on the path
on the way back,
just for kicks.
It’s 9:48pm on a Thursday evening. Talking to the three or four is not the easiest thing in the world to do right now. Alexis is making a whole bunch of noise at the bathroom sink that is feet from where I type. Clanking, clinking and asking me questions –
Who took all the Band Aids?
This is a recurring problem. Every time we buy a new pack of Band Aids, they disappear. You don’t need a Band Aid very often, but when you do, you’re pissed as hell when there aren’t any.
My days of radio are not filled with only radio. There is a lot of web television, if there is such a thing, and app development. I’m beginning to wonder if I should even call this blog “My Radio Life.” Today, I spent time with Will Haczel and Mark Perez on figuring out how to build a video playlist for our new TV station, wjobnetwork.com.
And then Darya Maroz and I picked apart a marketing packet for a physical therapy group in the Region. We combed through our statistics on our Facebook page to show them to the group. I don’t know if they’ll buy or not but at least we got a better understanding of our own numbers.
From looking at the numbers – and I won’t show them to the three or four of because they’re proprietary – I can’t for the life of me figure out two things:
- why way more women than men watch our videos.
- why so many people in Chicago watch our stuff.
You could come up with your own theories. Me, I just wanted something to put down on paper to show that we at least know what a number is. In the end, when we’re sitting in a sales meeting, I just want to stand up and tell the people –
“Listen, this is really good shit. You’re not gonna find a better deal for advertising anywhere in the Region, especially not now that we’re starting a TV network for real. So if I were you, I’d quit with the smugness and shut your mouth and sign.”
But I don’t say that. I keep listening to what potential clients are telling us. It’s called customer discovery. You should try it some time. It really works.
Darya, Christina, Debbie, Mark, Ryan and I have been working on what to say about out new TV network and how to say it for six weeks now. Every time we meet with a potential client or a fake client – someone we invite in just to listen to our pitch – we learn something new and have to change our marketing material. It’s a process all right, and it’s not a process that I’m particularly fond of. The thing to note is that every time we make a change, it seems that our marketing packet gets smaller and smaller. I guess, in the end, that we really only have a couple of simple messages. It took us a long time to figure that out.
Another thing that I’ve been messing around with is the HeyJED app. If the three or four of you haven’t downloaded it yet, don’t worry. No one has, really. We rolled it out nine months or so ago and the app sucked. We weren’t ready to tell anyone about it. It didn’t work right and the material that was produced wasn’t aimed at the right place.
Here’s the problem I’m trying to solve with the app. Every other hour, I get a message from someone asking me to have WJOB promote an event or a fundraiser or a meeting or something that benefits a charity, a school, a rehab facility and so on. This is part of our mission and I accept this as part of our mission.
But what I don’t accept is how all of the messages come to me. They come in:
- Facebook messages
- texts to my phone
- texts to our on-air line
- phone calls
- phone messages
- mailed flyers
- people stopping by
- people handing me a flyer at a party
These are just some of the ways that I am alerted to things that I should be promoting. It’s for the good of the community.
What I want to do is to make a uniform method of submission of these things. And I want it to be in audio.
Here’s what happens at a real radio station. All of these messages come in in one form or another and the program director hands them to the internship coordinator and they have interns record them and edit them. Then the operations manager inserts them into the on-air folder for play. A traffic manager and a billing manager are also involved in here somewhere.
We don’t have any of this. The message that people want us to promote, to run this thing efficiently, has to come to us in audio. We are, for better or worse, still primarily a couple of radio stations.
So how do we get people to send us audio that we can play easily on the air?
Simple. It’s the HeyJED app. You:
- download the app from Apple or Google
- you accept the terms
- you come up with a name for yourself
- you record your first HeyJED (it can’t be longer than 22 seconds)
- you play it back for yourself
- you press “send” to send it to me.
The message actually doesn’t come directly to me. It shows up in a social media feed on the app. To find all of the HeyJEDs that have come in, you swipe to the right. You can play any of the ones that you want.
And so can I. In other words, straight from my phone while I’m on the air, I can play your HeyJED. Or, better yet, we have routed a way for it to go into our on-air computer and it can play on the radio from there. What we do with the message and how we get it to play is none of your concern for now.
In the end, if I could get people to use the HeyJED app, then they could just record whatever it is that they want to say about their event and then send it to me. It’s in their voice. It’s their words. It’s ready to play.
I have no idea if this is going to work. I can tell you, however, that I do a piss-poor job of promoting all of the things that I should be promoting. It may sound like I’m thumbing for charity after charity when I’m on the morning show. But in reality there are so many things that fall through the cracks. The HeyJED app could help solve this.
So I’ve been working on.
- building a TV network
- developing an app
It sounds like a lot, but really it only takes about 10 hours a day to do a morning show and direct a ton of people what they should be doing and selling advertising and cutting deals for broadcast rights and attending a bunch of stuff. And then getting to building the TV network and the app.
Tomorrow is a typical day in the life of local radio guy. It starts with the morning show.
5:30 – JED in America from the sidewalk outside the Strack and Van Til studios on the campus of Purdue Northwest. I’ll talk about Michael Cohen turing on Trump.
6:15 - Michael Khadivar with Munster Babe Ruth Baseball. They’re having a national tournament this weekend and we’re set to broadcast the semifinals and finals in video. That’s on Sunday and Monday nights.
6:50 – Jen Studer, Illiana Banshees Rugby. I’m guessing that this is a women’s Rugby team. It will be a struggle to not mention that I once dated a female mud wrestler. She sometimes did jello wars also. This has nothing to do with women’s Rugby and I should probably stop going down this road right now, especially since my wife is laying in bed next to me reading, “The Couple Next Door.”
7:15 – Greg Kaplan, the king of fireworks. We’ll talk about the big class reunion from Munster High School, 1975-81. I may or may not go, but at least I could promote it.
That’s another thing. If I could get more people to use the HeyJED app, then it might actually cut down on the number of guests who have to come to the studio to promote their event. What would be more effective?
- doing a HeyJED for 22 seconds that gets played dozens of times during different segments throughout the day, or
- one 10-minute interview on the morning show.
Now that I think about it, the best possible coverage I could give these people is if they did both. Anyways, here’s the rest of my day.
9am – NIISSA meeting at the Gary Airport. We’re getting really close to building this emergency response center at the airport. I would tell you all about it in this space, but I don’t want to put your feet to sleep. Suffice it to say that it is my contention that if we take disasters seriously around here, we can attract big companies. I’m going to write a white paper about it as soon as I can find some paper in one of these drawers.
11am – Set up the WJOB booth at Pierogifest, where we’ll be broadcasting all weekend. Do a Facebook Live video with the Buscias.
Noon – Go to the sponsors luncheon at Pierogifest. Eat chicken, drink a Diet Pepsi.
1pm – Return to the WJOB-Strack and Van Til studios on the campus of Purdue Northwest. Station manager Debbie Wargo is out, so I have agreed to cover her duties, such as depositing money and answering the inquiries of the day. Often on Friday afternoon, we gotta produce and edit a commercial that has to start airing on Monday morning.
6pm – Return to Pierogifest in Whiting. I’ll host live video coverage of one of the most popular parades in the Midwest. The WJOB booth is smack dab in the middle of 100,000 people. It’s nuts. We’re all nuts.
9pm – Reunion time. There’s a big pre-reunion party at Centennial Park in Munster. I’ll probably go to this. The night before a reunion is almost always more fun than the reunion itself. I would be lying to the three or four of you if I said I didn’t really care what girls I used to date look like now. You just want a glimpse, just want to see what it has turned into. Sometimes it has turned into something way better than you would have predicted. And sometimes you shake your head – what the hell happened?
11pm – Alexis and I will return to this bed from which I type to you now. This is where it’s safe and loud, with the brand new portable air conditioner and all. I feel as if we’re sitting above the wing of a Southwest Airlines 707. It may be loud, but I like the company. In a way, I can’t wait to get through all of the stuff above so I can get right back to where I am now, typing and happy. Here’s something I wrote on January 8, 1985.
it has been a while if it matters I don’t
think it does and if it did what
do you think about the things that you think about
‘cause what you think you think about may not be what you really
think about if you really think about it and if it matters
and I do not think that it does if you know what I mean and I do not
think you do whoever you are because nobody does
nobody understands me
what stupid words
how about I feel so empty
how about I want to leave
always an option
running away is the easiest of things to
do in this life full of times in which you you you
must make a decision you you you
do not want to make
decisions are hard to stomach especially if they are your own but
senseless numbing pain is worse if you know what I mean
and I think you do
not ‘cause nobody does
if that is not a crock of shit
you horrible communicator