muscle shoals has got the swampers

Back in my radio career, in addition to managing operations for the stations in the group, I also held down several airshifts as a “radio personality”.

DJs get sick of songs way before you do. On the CHR formatted station, I played the same 9 current pop hits every 2 hours and 15 minutes until my ears bled. And while the burnout on songs on the classic rock, oldies, etc stations wasn’t as immediate, I got tired of them over the long term.

I played the same stuff so much that years later I can still remember that Sweet Home Alabama by Lynyrd Skynyrd was on GoldDisc 536 – cut 5. Werewolves of London by Warren Zevon was toward the bottom of the rack on the left on the “digital heart of rock” collection. I don’t remember the CD, but it was cut 17.

Needless to say, you can see I have played these songs numerous times. (and listened to them in other settings even more.) But until Kid Rock came out with All Summer Long this year, I had never noticed that Werewolves and Alabama had the same chord progression and sound the same in several spots.

I deal with a lot of people daily who have been doing the same thing for years. I speak to groups who are entrenched in the way things have always been. I consult with a lot of “experts” who know everything about something because they deal with it everyday.

When I get an inquiry for either a speaking engagement or a consulting gig, one of the first questions from the meeting planner or client usually is: Do you have any experience with our industry? Often, I answer that I don’t have experience with their industry, but I do know marketing and I can bring a fresh perspective. Sometimes that excites the person and sometimes the person is scared of going forward. Some of my best feedback has been from groups that I had never heard of before I spoke to them. I brought up things that they had never thought of.

Sometimes when you deal with the same thing everyday, you don’t notice the nuances and the opportunities. Things that should stand out clearly become wallpaper that blends in. I encourage you to start at square one with your marketing, your business, or anything. See if there’s a new way you can look at it. Or better yet, ask someone who has no clue about what you do if there’s something they can notice that you’ve missed for years.

4 thoughts on “muscle shoals has got the swampers

  1. Anonymous

    That’s funny, what you said about the DJ’s getting sick of the music before the listeners do. When you come to think of it..DUH. It makes perfect sense. As obvious as this might be, though, it never really occurred to me. In fact, we tend to get ticked off at the DJ’s, as if it was THEIR FAULT for ramming the same old music down my throat.But we tend to forget, the station programming is already pre-set, probably by a DJ-Vac-2000 Computer-Robot at Coroporate Headquarters. Just goes to show you how our stuck we can be with our preconceptions.

  2. Wendi Kelly

    Came over from Kelly’s site to read. great point. I belive in your premise whole heartedly. As someone with a background ins sales and marketing I see a lot of crowwover from one aplication to the next and a fresh perspective is often a huge eye-opener for anyone with an open mind. They will get great value from it. Face it- Clients aren’t in the business either..they are looking at it from the outside in too…It’s good to see another view every now and then.

  3. njre

    Hi, Newcomer on the scene. I need a little bit of fresh perspective. Would you evaluate something for me? My office is always trying to keep our interests. We have weekly office meetings and at the very beginning of my career, I thought the meetings were Awesome. Now, I find myself looking at the clock and its only an hour long. My Manager uses a power point presentation from corporate. There’s always one slide about market confidence, which is always positive, yet we see and hear conflicting info everywhere. I’m in real estate by the way! We could all use a little bit of fresh perspective. Good post!

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