Wednesday, April 12, 2006

Just 50 more laps

Someone that I know that works in car racing told me recently that if they had had just 50 more laps, they would have done even better.  I’m sure that the statement was absolutely true, but the reality is that the number of laps at any given track is determined months and years in advance of the race actually being run.  The statement made me think about the kinds of issues that all kinds of businesses face: trying to win based on the constraints that have already been set.

So how do you win if you can’t get 50 more laps?


I use tons of stock photos in my presentations, so I was excited to find everystockphoto, which does not host any stock photos, but rather aggregates stock photos from various different services.  Please stop filling your PowerPoints with endless bullets and start using everystockphoto to tell your story with pictures — you can’t beat the price.


Mark Cuban's success motivation

It’s just this simple: Don’t Lie to Yourself

Read the rest of Cuban’s post, become enlightened, stop lying to yourself.



Are Payless Shoes disposable?

I don’t shop in Payless Shoes, but I get that they essentially rip off uber-trendy designs and sell them ridiculously cheap.  Here’s something to consider: If you needed trendy shoes for a particular event and didn’t necessarily ever care about wearing them again, is it better to spend $14 at Payless or to spend a lot more?

I bet your answer is totally different depending on whether or not you’re male or female.

What to do when you can't earn a MBA

Rajesh Setty has published a free e-book entitled When You Can’t Earn an MBA. . .  Aside from the fact that you can’t use “an” in front of a word that starts in a consonant, the e-book is a worthwhile read.

Those of you that read this blog frequently have read a lot of my previous posts about MBAs and would encourage you to read this e-book if you’ve enjoyed (or violently disagreed) with any of my previous posts.

Link — e-book download

Link — Rajesh’s post explaining why he wrote it

Can't and won't

Seth Godin has a terrific post on can’t vs. won’t.  Here’s an easy lesson: take the last statement that you made where you said “can’t” and replace “can’t” with “won’t” and reevaluate the statement.

What if we were just honest about what we won’t do vs. what we can’t do?  I try to do this every day.


You know these things, but you don't do them

Seth Godin’s absolutely right:

1. treat different products differently
2. treat different customers differently

Perhaps it’s just to simple.


Can't access some of the saved content on Bloglines

So this really sucks.  It’s bad enough that Bloglines is not effectively pulling new posts, but now I can’t access some of the saved posts that I’ve got in various folders — this totally blows.

Summer employment

If you’re looking to work at Coors Amphitheatre-Denver this summer, allow me to provide you with some contacts:

  • Security, usher, ticket taker, cleaning, or parking — Argus Event Staff (303) 799–1140.
  • Concessions, bartending, or waiter — Aramark Concession (303) 846–3645.

Aramark and Argus are our 2 biggest subcontractors and employ the vast majority of the staff that work our events.  In addition both Aramark and Argus provide services at many other entertainment venues in the Denver Metro area, so they are great places to start if you are looking to get into the entertainment business.  I actually started working for Argus when I was in college.

What are you doing right now?

Excellent question.  We spend an awful lot of time dewinterizing the amphitheatre — think about the amphitheatre as about 100 times the work that you do in dewinterizing your house (if you live in a climate where you winterize and dewinterize).

We do the following (and this is a very abbreviated list):

  • All of the plumbing and toilets get taken apart during the winter, so we get everything put back together, turn all the water back on, and make adjustments to ensure everything flows correctly and is at proper pressure.  For those of you that use urinals and have been splashed when you flush, you will appreciate the time that we take.
  • We hand-inspect every seat in the building and replace broken parts, tighten bolts, replace springs, replace seat numbers, and do whatever maintenance is necessary.  For those keeping score, that’s 6,823 seats that we hand inspect and hand repair.
  • Unpack everything that we stored for the winter.  Folding tables, folding chairs, box suite furniture, tents, equipment, vehicles; everything gets unpacked, cleaned, serviced, and ready to work.
  • All of the signs get uncovered, cleaned, and repaired if necessary.
  • We check every light bulb in the building and replace all of the bulbs that are burned out.
  • Painting
  • Cleaning

It takes a lot of work to get buildings the size of ours going for the season.

Saturday, April 01, 2006

Big Champagne

If you’re in the music business and not paying a lot of attention to the data that Big Champagne provides, perhaps you should consider whether or not you should be in the music business.


RSS competing with CDs?

Check out the post on The Work Better Weblog.  I think the artist and people that seek to have/purchase/sponsor artist content need to realize that although the labels tend to own all the rights to the songs, the stories about the songs, stories about the band, stories about anything are free game.


Sunday, March 19, 2006

Class Action law suit against the music industry

Check out this description:

The suit also alleges that the record labels sought to shut down online music pioneer Napster at the same time they were introducing their own joint ventures to sell online music. MusicNet and pressplay "were not serious commercial ventures, but rather attempts to occupy the market with frustrating and ineffectual services in order to head off viable Online Music competitors from forming and gaining popularity after Napster's demise," according to the suit.

More details in the full post on Ars Technica.


Arctic Monkeys make it big using the internet

Unlike traditional bands, the Arctic Monkeys, an indie UK band on an indie UK label, developed a following online that helped them sell 360,000 copies of their debut album in the first week, which is a UK record for the fastest selling indie debut album.  Notably Arctic Monkeys released many of their songs on MP3 for free and encouraged fans to share the songs including sharing the songs on P2P networks.  Not surprisingly, the band also used a MySpace site to connect with fans and further encourage the spread of their music.

Is this a sign of the new way of breaking bands?  I sure hope so.

Read the full story on Monkey Bites.


Sunday, March 05, 2006

I'm trying to understand this MySpace Music thing

Ok, I get a lot of what’s going on with MySpace Music and I get a lot of what’s not going on as well. As part of my MySpace experiment on Strategize, I’m playing around a lot with MySpace Music because music is my business.

Here’s what I think about:

Stars Hide Fire has some really good music. Their profile on MySpace has 77,00 views. Their 2 songs have 29,000 combined plays. They have 6,210 MySpace friends. Does this mean that someone in the live music business on the East Coast should be paying attention to booking these guys? After all, with as many friends and views and plays as this band has on their MySpace site, which doesn’t even count their website, shouldn’t this be a good regional booking if not a good national club booking?

The problem with the logic above is that it does not seem like anyone is running any sort of correlation data for MySpace metrics against live music sales. I’m not talking about measuring the power of nationally touring acts like Green Day, I’m talking about measuring the power of MySpace for emerging, regional, and local bands in a quantifiable way. What people like me want to know is how many friends or profile views or song plays it takes to indicate a successful band.


Snaptune allows you to record music from FM radio to a PC.  This isn’t hard to do with other services and configurations, but Snaptune adds song metadata, does not record repeated songs, and if you use a USB FM tuner, can even change stations based on how you program it.

This is probably going to drive the RIAA crazy.


Friday, February 24, 2006

Google Web Page Creator

100 megs of storage and the ability to build pages with a web-based tool — the name says it all.


Malcolm Gladwell's blogging

Not sure if this is new news to anyone else, but it is to me.


Thursday, February 16, 2006

Sprint reports 1 million song downloads

Ok, at $2.50 per song, I find it a little hard to believe that Sprint users have already downloaded 1 million songs to their phones.

Check out the article on cellular-news through the link below.



Podbop is a service that brings together upcoming concert events with available MP3s from bands that are performing.  All of the information is organized by city, and once you’ve done a city search, Podbop provides a RSS feed that you can subscribe to for each particular city search.  What’s cool about the RSS feed is that any available MP3 files from bands that are performing are included within the RSS feed so that you do not have to click through a bunch of links to get at them.  The cities that I have looked at seem to include information not only for national touring acts, but also for local bands performing at smaller venues, which is really cool.

Check it out.


Sunday, February 12, 2006

I'll be at CIC on Moday

I’m flying in tomorrow morning and leaving tomorrow night, but I’ll be around most of the day tomorrow.  If you’re going to be there to and want to chat, shoot me an e-mail and I’ll do my best to meet up with you.