Category Archives: Marketing

As scene on TV…

One of the many benefits of having a home office is having a TV on my desk. I keep it tuned to Fox News or the Sirius Classic Jazz channel for most of the day – having either a background of news or jazz suits me just fine. I also have a conveniently-located mute button, in case I need to take a call, work on audio, or if it gets distracting.

This time of year, most companies pushing gifts spend a year’s worth of ad budgets in 30 days or less. Where as before November 2nd we were assaulted with All Political Ads, All The Time, now it’s ads for Omaha Steaks (making me hungry), has-been singers pushing a Greatest Hits album, or the latest and greatest kitchen appliance, each and every one guaranteed to be The Perfect Christmas Gift.

I’m sure you’re as annoyed with this kind of dreck as I am – at least you would be if you left your TV on all day. My vote for the most annoying ad in the Fox News rotation? Christy Lane’s 30 Christmas Classics. Continue reading As scene on TV…

New site launched. Read all about it.

We just lit up a new site for RiverFields – an Amarillo-based sporting goods shop that specializes in fly fishing, hunting, and self-defense. Their old site was, dated, to put it mildly. The reason was, it required a web guy to make any changes. It was just way too difficult for RiverFields to make changes conveniently. Therefore, they simply didn’t change anything. For several years. At all.

We began the new site by designing it with an eye towards how they’d be able to update it easily. That meant designing it for Adobe Contribute (so they could make changes to the text and static pictures) and implement a content management system so they could easily make changes/additions/deletions to their photo galleries (using the worth-its-weight-in-gold SlideShow Pro Director).

You can see the new site at www.riverfields.com. You can compare and contrast it with the old site, which (for a while yet) is online at www.riverfields.com/oldsite.

Let me know what you think.

Ayn Rand was Right.

I think most people go through life paying attention to their own specific interests, all the while blotting out what’s happening around them. They only wake up when something dramatic happens, or when it’s too late to do something about whatever it is that’s suddenly captured their attention.

9/11 is a case in point.

Aside from CIA, FBI, and NSA people, most people living in the pre-9/11 world had no concept of the danger we face from Islamic fascism.

That’s human nature, I suppose. We tune out most things that happen around us, because, frankly, we just don’t have the bandwidth. But that’s a dangerous habit when it comes to personal safety/homeland security. I’ve also come to believe that it’s equally dangerous when it comes to society and culture – specifically pop culture. Continue reading Ayn Rand was Right.

Once more, dear friends, into the studio…

I actually used to own one of these dinosaurs. Really.
I actually used to own one of these dinosaurs. Really.

It’s come to my attention that I am like the cobbler’s children, shoeless, in spite of their father’s profession. I am a musician, without any recent recorded samples of my work. This is an inconvenient, but not insurmountable problem. 

 

So today, I’m gonna fix it. 

Of course, in my own, inimitable, Captain Digital fashion, I can’t resist a little feature creep, allowing the scope to grow past the prime purpose of the mission.  Continue reading Once more, dear friends, into the studio…

Let me entertain you.

It dawned on me, as I was creating some ‘quickie’ bizcards, that I needed a website specific to the musician-side of my life. I’m a big believer in perception versus reality, and the reality is, people perceive a certain degree of “serious” in regards to an email address. If you want someone to take you seriously, a Gmail, Hotmail, or Yahoo address is not gonna cut the mustard. On the other hand, if you have your own domain name, it’s almost like instant street cred. So I bought bradkozak.com and set it up as a site dedicated to my singer/songwriter/entertainer biz. Of course, since I create websites for a living, it didn’t take but a couple of hours to throw together a website. (It took longer to get Mrs. Digital to help me with the photos, and to do the Photoshopping than it did to write the site code.) Continue reading Let me entertain you.

The “Voice of God” has passed away…

I am sorry to report that Don LaFontaine, master voiceover artist, has passed away on Labor Day. He was 68.

I never met Don in person, but I had the opportunity to work with him on some TV spots, and I know his wife, Anita, well. (She’s from my hometown of Shreveport, LA, and my Dad wrote the arrangement she used of “Somewhere Over the Rainbow” to go to the Miss American paegant, as Miss Louisiana.)

By all accounts, everyone that knew Don called him a great guy. My cousin (who visited Don and Anita in California a bunch) tells me he was witty, with a wicked sense of humor, and not at all pompous or distant in the way that celebrities can be. I can attest personally to the fact that he was generous to a fault, and was willing to “put his money where his mouth is” when it comes to causes he would support.

It’s hard for me to think about Don in the past tense. While there are other voiceover artists that mimic’d Don’s style and delivery, there will never be another Don LaFontaine. My heart and prayers go out to Anita and their kids in what must be a very difficult time. Please keep them in your prayers.

In a world of advertising, where too few voiceover artists have the ability to create a distinctive sound, Don LaFontaine will be missed.

I love pundits.

A couple of quick observations…

  1. Pundits are often wrong. (See the last few weeks of coverage on “McCain’s pick for V.P.”
  2. Pundits are sheeple, too. (They don’t always think for themselves, and there’s a pecking order…an influential pundit will say something, and the under-pundits will immediately start echoing his opinions as their own.
  3. Pundits LOVE their own talking points…and hate having to answer questions that force them to abandon using the talking points as answers. Continue reading I love pundits.

A couple of (probably stupid) ideas…

…courtesy of my liberal arts (i.e.: lack of science) education…

IDEA #1. Back in the days before central air conditioning and refrigeration made it possible to live comfortably through summers in the South, one enterprising entrepreneur floated a huge iceberg from the northern Atlantic down to the Gulf of Mexico. The purpose? Provide inexpensive ice for evaporative coolers, which at the time were the only way to cool a room. He made a fortune.

I understand from the sound-byte journalism on TV that the reason that tropical storms that cross into the Gulf become hurricanes is due to the warm waters in the Gulf. (It’s why the eco-Nazis try to convince us all that hurricanes are a lot worse due to ‘global warming.’) Continue reading A couple of (probably stupid) ideas…

A little experiment in musicial (self-)marketing.

Recently, I’ve gotten restless, and I’ve decided to begin playing music professionally again. Trouble is, I don’t have a lot of contacts here in Amarillo. So I’ve decided to apply the same techniques I recommend to my marketing clients to my own situation. That means I’ve got to find ways to get myself noticed around town. What you see at the left here is a poster I whipped up in an hour or so this evening. I’ve secured a one-night gig – kind of a “let’s see if this works” kind of thing. Obviously, I’d like this to turn into a regular gig. So I’m doing everything I know how to do to make that happen. First, we’ll start with promotions. I’m going to print several of these posters and give them to Pizza Hut. I figure that the combination of a nice-looking poster along with taking the initiative to promote my appearance there will go a long way towards helping them see the possibilities. It won’t cost me much to do it, and it will help serve my larger goal of getting my name out there as a musician in Amarillo. With only two days before the gig, I don’t have much time to self-promote, but I figure that anything I can do is better than sitting around and waiting for something good to happen. Continue reading A little experiment in musicial (self-)marketing.

A little blogging news.

grokmediaI’m a big fan of blogging. Part of it is that I’m a writer – copywriting, techincal writing, correspondence, you name it. (Mrs. Digital keeps bugging me about writing the next Great American Novel. We’ll see.) Anyway, I’ve been gratified by the responses I’ve gotten, as well as the ever-increasing number of people that are reading my blog. Blogging is a lot like anything else you do – the more you put into it, the more you get out of it. One of the things I’ve learned, is that if you put a little work into promoting your blog with the blog aggregators and social networking services, you’ll dramatically increase the number of people that know about your blog – and if it’s any good, the number of people reading it. Continue reading A little blogging news.