Smart Phones Mean Business

Mobile Shopping imageI love my smart phone. A Samsung Galaxy 5. It does everything – except FaceTime – but there’s Skype, Facebook’s talk feature, Google Hangouts and other alternatives if I need to spend some face time with someone across town or in another time zone.

My smart phone gets me out of my studio and I can stay connected with my business. You never know when an emergency voiceover will pop up. And if you are not in the media production business you might not realize just how often there actually is a voiceover emergency. Had one on Monday. The call came in at 2 for a 3 o’clock session with a client on the East Coast.

The flip side of having a smart phone is that it keeps me connected with my business. There are times when it is good to […]

Do You Have a Digital Media Production Tribe?

MCA-I logoMany years ago when ITVA changed their name to MCA-I – people just didn’t know what to do. The new name was hard to say for one thing. And the change happened at a time when technology was evolving and the business climate was changing. It created sort of a perfect storm that sent the association into turmoil. Something not unique to MCA-I – many associations have been feeling the effects.

While MCA-I is still alive (, and remains strong in scattered chapters around the US, it is in regrowth mode.

The name MCA-I is still a mouthful to this day. Back then we tried to find a way to make it easier to say – so a few of us dubbed ourselves the “McEye” Tribe. That was the phonetic pronunciation. While it never really caught on, it worked […]

2018-02-06T06:48:04+00:00 February 25th, 2016|Categories: Announcements, Business, Life, Marketing|Tags: , , , |

Facebook as another top distribution channel for video ads

FacebookPage_videoJust ran across an article discussing how to use Facebook as another area of distribution and why you should consider it. Apparently YouTube is still the king, but Facebook is gaining ground.

The folks at ReelSEO make the case for advertisers to use multiple sources with YouTube first and Facebook second. What strikes me is how complicated it is for advertisers to find any common way of analyzing the results. The technology is changing so fast that each new iteration brings new tracking metrics and ways of paying for your ads – clicks, time spent watching, what constitutes a view so that you know what you are going to be charged, etc. This article has links to explanations of current methods.

But the bulk of the article is on how to maximize the effectiveness of your video ads for Facebook.

Their first […]

2018-02-06T06:48:04+00:00 February 4th, 2016|Categories: Advertising, Announcements, Business, Marketing, Technology|Tags: |

T/V is the new TV

11970902691035892752Chrisdesign_comic_TV.svg.hiSo, I’m reading my weekly MediaPost Online Video Insider column and ran across the use of T/V (television/video) instead of TV. It was in an article talking about the separation of content viewing and ad viewing – which will be the subject of another post.

This actually makes a lot of sense to me, but apparently the idea is so new that even Google hasn’t gotten hip to it. I did a search for T/V and nothing came up.

I did find a hysterical bit of education about when to say Tee-Vee, The Television, or the tele from the website Woodward English.

But nothing yet on the new T/V.


2018-02-06T06:48:04+00:00 January 21st, 2016|Categories: Announcements, Musings|Tags: |

Simply Simplify

SimplifyMost of my adult life has been spent accumulating stuff – tangible and intangible. Lots of stuff. Cluttering up my physical, mental and emotional space. Most of us have stuff – lots of stuff. (I feel like George Carlin! If you have never heard this bit from him, check it out below. A little bit ‘o swearing, but pretty tame compared to most modern comics.)

Anyway, we all have a lot of stuff. We go through our stuff at times, weeding through our stuff and donating it to our favorite thrift store. Sorting through data stuff – deleting or archiving. All of this activity opens up space for more new stuff to gather.

Sometimes we don’t have a chance to decide which stuff to get rid of. Like when your external hard drive crashes and all the stuff on it is gone for good.

Yeah, that […]

2018-02-06T06:48:04+00:00 January 12th, 2016|Categories: Business, Life, Musings, Technology|Tags: , , , |

Eyeballs! How many eyeballs are seeing your video?

extraterristrial-eye-plant-1000pxHow do you know if the video you just created is getting seen and (probably even more important) getting the results you want? View count? Reach? Engagement?

First you have to know what you want your video to do and who you want to see it. When I was producing videos for General Dynamics, we had to be the sanity check for so many of our internal clients who came down to our “hidden film factory” wanting a video. After a detailed conversation to establish the what and the who, many times the client didn’t actually need a video to get their message to their particular audience. But when a video was produced, we spent a lot of our pre-production time hashing out these details.

This was in a time period before the Internet, so collecting data on the effectiveness of  the video (or film) […]

2018-02-06T06:48:04+00:00 December 12th, 2015|Categories: Business, Marketing|Tags: , , , |

Yes, we have no bananas…

Bananas“Yes, We Have No Bananas”  (the Louis Prima version here in this link) says…

He just “yes”es you to death, and as he takes your dough He tells you
“Yes, we have no bananas
We have-a no bananas today
We’ve string beans, and onions
Cabashes, and scallions,
And all sorts of fruit and say
We have an old fashioned tomato
A Long Island potato But yes, we have no bananas
We have no bananas today”

How does this apply to our business? Bananas = Time.

While I don’t have empirical evidence of this, most voiceover people can usually balance all the projects that show up on their “doorstep” and meet client deadlines. Particularly if you are doing self-directed short form work.

However, there are times when you are actually too busy to take on another project on any given day or week. In most cases, the client can wait for you to work it […]

2018-02-06T06:48:04+00:00 November 15th, 2015|Categories: Business, Communication, Negotiating|Tags: , , |

Careful What You Ask For

WoVo logo WoVo is an association of voiceover professionals (both union and non-union) seeking to inform and educate about best practices, standards for ethical conduct and professional expertise. It has an online casting engine that features ONLY vetted professional voices, unlike the company being discussed in this blog post.

Remember the commercial actors strike in 2000? Pay-per-Play was one of the big things the union was asking for. The business has never really been the same.

According to a white paper published by Villanova University the convergence of TV and the Internet was the “core” issue. The unions were aware of the technical tsunami approaching, that the distribution of the content was forever changing. Not the actual work, but the delivery of the product.

It is hard to predict the future, but being responsive to changes so that you don’t get so far […]

2018-02-06T06:48:04+00:00 November 6th, 2015|Categories: Announcements, Auditioning, Business, Marketing, Technology|

Are you an Independent Contractor? Maybe. Maybe not.

Connie at KCOE-FM Early radio days – KCOE-FM. Their tools, their schedule. MY MIX!

If you are not being paid W2 wages, then you may fall into the category of self-employed, freelance, or independent contractor. Or, you may simply be being paid incorrectly. If this is the case, then don’t be surprised when the red flag goes up and the IRS comes knocking.

The Business Dictionary defines independent contractor this way…(I added the bold.)

Self-employed person (architect, consultant, engineer, etc.) who provides certain services to a second-party called the principal (or client or owner), or to a third-party on behalf of the client. An independent contractor is not under the control, guidance, or influence of the client and, unlike an employee, does not owe a fiduciary duty. The client neither deducts the payroll (or the withholding) taxes from payments to the independent contractor, […]

2018-02-06T06:48:05+00:00 October 24th, 2015|Categories: Business, Marketing|

A little (on purpose) down time

Many people have written about the importance of taking time off. It’s good for you according to an article in the Huffington Post – “Taking Time Off Can Improve Health and Productivity.”

A lot of people agree with this – an article in US News and World Report said – “45 percent of Americans agreed that “they come back to work feeling rested, rejuvenated, and reconnected to their personal life” after vacation…”

Some people swear by taking lots of mini-vacations. I’ve talked about that before. My current “job” as a voice talent allows me to take time off pretty much whenever I want – a couple of hours at a time. I do this on a regular basis. Take off on a hike up Cowles Mountain, or down to the Grinding Rocks in Mission Trails. Head out to the beach (when the water is warm enough) to catch some waves on […]

2018-02-06T06:48:05+00:00 October 17th, 2015|Categories: Life, Musings|Tags: , , |