I’ve always believed that “Necessity is the mother of invention.” Still, sometimes, even she doesn’t help. For example, after doing almost every promotion and contest tat I’ve ever been involved in, KZST decided to try and give away a million dollars. As the promotion wound down, I said to Brent Farris, (pictured below) “We’ll never be able to top that, you’ll have to come up with the next one, cuz I’m dry.”
The toughest promotions I have trouble creating, are the ones you have to come for clients. There’s usually very little money allocated for the promotion itself so your creative juices need to be flowing. Surprisingly, though, they sometimes produce shocking results that become news worthy.
when the economy in America tanked, we put together a giant Garage sale for our clients called the 50% Off Free Fair which we did in Dallas and Indy. It was held it at the fair ground in both cities but unfortunately so many folks tried to get to it that shut down all the roads leading there. Once the people arrived, they were so afraid that they were going to miss out on the bargains, they cleaned the place out.
In San Diego, when Don Walker (pictured above) came to me for a promotion that he owed the Doubletree Hotel. I told him that if the hotel could provide a little wine and cheese, we’d have a “Drop Off” party at their Hotel. All the folks had to do was drop off their Prize Catalog for one more shot at a prize but it closed down Interstate 8.
When the printing got too expensive, my brother Reg (pictured above) put the Prize Catalog up on the internet; it caused all kinds of internet havoc. However, the negativity inspired him to create his famous “Rewards Program.”
After running the “Magic Ticket successfully in Dallas and Indianapolis, I’ll never forget our sending Jerry Bobo (pictured above with me) to explain how it all worked to all the executives and managers along with their wives of “Friendly’s in Boston at a special presentation.
At some point, Jerry said, “The Magic Ticket is a promotion that based on greed, but instead of trying to explain it, why don’t I just show you.” With that, he reached into his attache case and started throwing fistfuls of money at them.
What a joy it was to see all those nicely dressed folks crawling around on their hands and knees as they pushed and shoved each other trying to scoop up the cash.
After the Magic Ticket, we purposely only mailed, “The Checks In The Mail” to three-quarters of Boston so we could drive folks to a client’s location to pick up theirs. Unfortunately, when Loren & Wally (pictured above) showed up with the checks in a Brinks Truck, you couldn’t get near the place, so a riot broke out.
Then there was the time we sent Robert Murphy of WRMF (pictured above) to a client’s location to stand outside and buy dollars from the folks who showed up with a nine and an eight in any dollars they had. We were hoping to draw a crowd, but the police had to be called to control the crowd,
When the newspaper was interviewing Ron Chapman (pictured above), the reporter noticed bags of mail lining the hallways at KVIL. When she asked what all that was, and Ron said, “It’s for a contest, she said, “I bet you could go on air and just ask for money for no reason, and they’d send it.” He did, and within three days, two hundred and fifty thousand dollars showed up.
Shortly after discovering Delilah in Seattle and bringing her (pictured above at her party) to Boston, the sales department needed a promotion for a client who had a new sightseeing vessel down at the harbor. What we came up with on the spur of the moment, was a sort of coming-out part like the debutants have. However, so many folks showed up to meet Delilah that we almost sank the damn boat.
However, the worst promotion we ever did was when Visa offered all our stations their own credit card. The card came complete with the station’s call letters on it plus a share in the profits, cool right? Wrong! Most of the people who applied for it didn’t qualify so they hated us for rejecting them.
You can learn how to do almost anything except sing or draw.
When we find “The One,” we never want them to change, but they always do.
If you don’t think we live in a sexist society, ponder this. Women can get away with sleeping their way up the ladder, but if a man suggests it, his career is over, and he could go to jail.
Speaking of sexism, how can hundreds of Priests be outed for their horrendous behavior, but not one Nun?
If you’re trying to figure out how to fit in, you’ll never stand out.
Running a business takes the same dedication as raising a child. Not sure you can do both effectively.
Uncle Brent asks, “How come all the TV ladies doing news, dress like they’re at a cocktail party, and the men look like they’re at a business meeting?”
I must know too much because I know a lot of things that I don’t want to know.
Figuring out what’s good about bad things will make you happy.
To be believed, one must make others see what you see.
No matter how many times you fall, you only have to get up one more time than your competitor to be declared the winner.
Nobody wants to deal with what they are afraid of, but once you do, it disappears.
I’ve lived in America for most of my life, but here’s what I still don’t buy.
(1)Nobody in the government or the Pentagon knew that Pearl Harbor was about to happen.
(2)Lee Harvey Oswald acted alone when he assassinated JFK.
(3)There was a gas shortage when Jimmy Carter was president.
(4)The Anti Viet Nam protests were about the war and not the draft. (Witness the lack of demonstrations today)
(5)There were weapons of mass destruction in Iraq.
(6)A few towel heads shortly after learning how to fly also figured out how to implode the Twin Towers.
(7)We are still fighting in the desert because the desert rats are a threat to America.
(8)Jeffery Epstein committed suicide.
I think the person who should be in charge of America is whoever it was that got those curbs shaved down, ramps built, restrooms adapted, and the handicapped spaces marked. How the hell did they get it all done so quickly?
Speaking of handicapped spaces, Uncle Brent says that if you park because there are no spots left, that’ll cost you four hundred bucks. However, if you park on the sidewalk, that’s only forty.
What things are better left unsaid, and who the hell are they, as in they said?
The more you try to hide something in the dark, the brighter it becomes.
Did you know, if you’re suspected of being a terrorist, you have no right to a lawyer?
I wonder if the Superstars remember who it was that gave them their first break?
Facts and fallacies may look and sound the same, but only “A is A.”
Doug Herman: Get together five or six guys, and a whole lot of whiskey, and chances are they’ll start a fight. Get together five or six guys and a whole lot of weed, and it’s pretty much guaranteed they’ll start a band. (Hey, Who Dat?)
Jed Duvall: George: One can apologize, one can do penance and atone for one’s wrong-doing. One can go to rehab and go through the twelve steps. But I wonder how one can find forgiveness with one’s self. Guilt and regret are heavyweights on the soul. Peace. (Our Good Economy Is Good For Whom?)
Doug Chappell: Jeez George, there must have been a lot of broken trucks on Yonge st. While promoting a Tubes live show on a Saturday night we at A&M had a flatbed truck travel Yonge street with Lee Silversides (6′ 6″ wearing some Master John boots adding another 6″) dressed as Fee Waybill along with a bevy of scantily clad women, blasting out Tubes music. Wouldn’t you just know it, that truck broke down at 5:00 PM at Yonge & Bloor !!~! Great minds … seldom differ. (Here’s Your Free Get Out Of Jail Card)
GEO: Doug, you lucked out with a break down at Yonge and Bloor, ours occurred at Yonge and Adelaide near CFTR. How embarrassing for both of us. 🙂
Geo’s Media Blog is an inside look at Radio, Music, Movies, and Life. For a sneak peek at some upcoming Blogs, or to see some that you may have missed, go to Geo’s Media Blog @GeorgeJohns.com. On Twitter @GeoOfTheRadio. Sharing and commenting is appreciated.