10 Questions with ... Chad Taylor-Zimmerman
July 4, 2011
BRIEF CAREER SYNOPSIS:
- WZXA/(Racine-Milwaukee, WI (1995-1997)
- WPNT/Milwaukee, WI (1997)
- WXLC/Waukegan, WI (1997-2001)
- WXCV/Homosassa Springs, FL (2001-2003)
- Z International Entertainment (clients include Jordan Knight, Danny Wood (NKOTB), PM Dawn, Jeff Timmons (98 Degrees) Management/Backup DJ (2003-2006)
- KSTZ/Des Moines, IA (2006-2007)
- KUOO/KUYY/KUQQ/Spirit Lake, IA (2007-Present)
1) What Got You Interested In Radio?
My love for communicating with others and the passion for music! I get to combine those (2) things every single day I step into the studio. I can remember being (5) years old and singing along with the radio and impersonating the jock that would come on. My mom said she knew from that point I was either going to someway involved in the entertainment business.
2) What makes your station or market unique? How does this compare to other markets or stations you have worked at?
We are small market radio but have major market sound. We do promotions and contests that you usually only see in bigger markets. My attitude has always been you can be small but mighty. We don't let our market size get in the way of what we want to accomplish both on the air and on the streets. It's a unique market due to the fact that we service not only our local listeners but the many visitors that frequent the Iowa Great Lakes on any given day. The population more than triples in the summer months and it brings in an entire new audience.
3) Who do you consider your radio mentor(s)?
Program Directors I've worked for like Nick Farella (WXLC) and Jim Schaefer (KSTZ). Other programmers I've met like Brian Kelly (WMYX), and talents like Casey Kasem, Howard Stern, and of course, Mr. Ryan Seacrest.
4) What is it about your station that you feel really makes it cut through?
Our staff! From the sales floor to the studios we have a team that loves radio and wants to be the best every single day. Staying fresh and one step ahead of the competition. We are forward thinking and not afraid to take chances.
5) What research tools do you use to program your station?
We look at other station's playlists, Billboard, All Access, and we combine that with listener feedback, jock feedback, phones, Facebook, Twitter, etc.
6) How are you using social media to market your radio station?
Everything we have going on at our cluster hits Twitter, Facebook, and MySpace right away! We are constantly looking for listener feedback on our social media pages through our "Question Of The Day," listener polls, announcements etc. We also post interviews on our pages and make the pages a big part of each jock's show.
7) What's one thing that would surprise many people to learn about you?
I performed all over the globe as a backup singer/DJ with artists like Jordan Knight and Danny Wood from NKOTB, Jeff Timmons of 98 Degrees, MC Brains, PM Dawn, and Bryan Abrams of Color Me Badd.
I co wrote on Jordan Knights Billboard AC Top 12 Hit "Where is your Heart Tonight," and I also had a cameo on VH1's Surreal Life (Season three) and a cameo in the upcoming thriller "Killer Holiday".
8) Do new technologies like on demand music, videos, TV, streaming, and mobile smart phone apps enhance consumer's interest in traditional media such as radio, the CD, or even the MP3 player? Or are these new technologies replacing traditional media?
I think these new media are an enhancing the radio experience. Radio stations MUST be aware of the new technologies on the market and align their brand with them! (i.e. streaming, on-demand audio, interviews, smart phone apps etc.
9) What do you view as the most important issue facing radio today?
Staying relevant and fresh. :) And making sure were everywhere the listeners are! Radio needs to assume a multi-platform distribution model!
10) What is the one truth that has held constant in your career?
Follow your instincts! Listen to that voice inside that tells you when something is right or wrong.
1) What do you do in your spare time?
Spare time? When I'm not working 12 hours a day, I enjoy traveling with my wife and my daughter Macy. We like checking out concerts in Des Moines or Minneapolis, and of course watching my daughter play T-Ball, basketball, or soccer (way more athletic than her old man).
2) Who is the most amazing talent you've worked with?
Jon Armond. He worked for me at KUYY (Y100.1) and is currently morning drive on WMGX in Portland, ME. He's witty, smart, fresh, and always ready to go!
3) What can we be doing with our station web sites to better our stations as a whole?
Streaming is first and foremost! By putting up interactive videos, listener polls, and cleaning up any unnecessary information, or graphics. Don't clog up the page! Keep it current and fresh at all times! Give your audience a reason to keep coming back multiple times a day. Solicit listener pictures, reviews, etc.
4) Who is your best friend in the business?
Jim Cech, former night jock at WMYX Milwaukee.
5) As you look back over your career ... any regrets? Missed opportunities?
I don't have any regrets - I'm happy with the choices I've made and the relationships I've built along the way. I did pass on an opportunity to head to NW Oregon about a year ago. The stations and staff were great. The area was just beautiful and the CEO is someone I admire very much; Trila Bumstead.