Tuesday, June 01, 2010

When I Read It, I Said "I Need To Blog This"

Don Anthony's daily "Morning Mouth" is always laden with ideas and inspiration, and I know that some of the best morning talent in the nation are addicted to it.

BUT, does ownership and programming management read it or even know about it? I'd bet that the best ones do, but in case not, I want to turn up my amplifier to echo a great post this morning: "It's The Talent, Stupid."

"Having a chance to speak with John McConnell and David Katz, a couple of guys behind some of the biggest names and careers in radio, we thought we'd pick their minds on questions several of today's personalities would like to know: What Kind of Talent Gets Your Attention Quickest? "People who have the "it" factor," says McConnell. "You know when you meet and talk to them that they have the ability to be very successful in their pursuit." Adds Katz: " With a radio personality, ..the person that simply jumps off the 'radio screen' if you will. And sadly, that happens quite rarely." What Does It Take To Be a National Star? "Patience," says Katz. "A ridiculous amount of hard work, and an ego...and someone who can check that ego at the door. Everybody wants to go national, but few people have the patience to take the necessary steps. And that patience means competing and succeeding in one market, or a few markets, first. Those talents who are willing to be directed and guided will have a far better chance at succeeding nationally, than those who don't." McConnell adds, "It takes guts and very hard work. I've auditioned any number of TV superstars who haven't scored in radio because they didn't have the wherewithal to do the work. How Will Talent's Role Evolve in Radio's Future? McConnell says "Broadcasters and producers, based on the 8 or so new distribution options available to any single talent, clearly will look at performers with an eye on "what else they can do." But realistically, great talent will only achieve a lot of success in one, sometimes in two, but only a handful have done it 3 or more distributions. When you attempt to push talent across too many venues, it can lessen their value, not enhance it. For example, using a producer to tweet incessantly on a morning host's comings and goings is not effective. Using facebook to run promotions just pisses off users of the space." Katz says " As a 'recovering' talent agent, I am a believer it will always be about the talent. Regardless of what medium we're talking about: radio, internet, TV, film, other...And, I'm also a believer in you never know where the next talent comes from. I overheard Mel Karmazin once tell Don Buchwald that he can own all the 'hardware' in the business, but if he didn't have the 'software' to go with it, the hardware would be less valuable. That software, of course, is talent. ..Thus, talent's role will and/or should always be of the utmost importance. I only wish more executives, particularly in the radio medium, didn't fear talent, or try to diminish them. TV, Film, Theatre, all understand the importance of talent and celebrate them, and champion them."

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