10 Questions with ... Melody Minx
February 24, 2014
BRIEF CAREER SYNOPSIS:
Middays on KWNZ, Mornings on KZTI & Weekend Events show "Renocentric" on KNEWS
- Citadel Communications/Reno, NV - Promotions Intern, - 1998
- KLCA, KWNZ/Reno, NV - On Air Personality - 1998-2000
- KDOT/Reno, NV - On Air/Weekends/Fill-In - 2004-2008
- KOZZ/Reno, NV - Middays - 2007-2013
- KHIT/Fresno, CA - Middays - 2010
- KZTI (Mornings), KWNZ (Midddays) and KRNV (Events show) - 2013 to present
1) What Got You Interested In Radio?
I fell into it like Alice down the rabbit hole. Being the next Barbara Walters was my goal. In one of my broadcasting classes, I was a little too slow to sign up for the intern portion and got a radio station instead of TV. Had a blast and it stuck!
2) Who do you consider your radio mentors?
I try to pick up one or two things from everywhere that I can! Either what TO do: or what NOT to do. Remarkably, I learned a ton from a sales guy at Lotus Communications named Roy Robinson. Of course, he wasn't your average sales guy. He'd been in the biz in all manners for longer than I've been alive. He even owned a station or two.
The overall lessons I picked up from him were pertaining to respect and dedication. I learned so much about how to treat those you work with and especially clients willing to support your station. At any of his remotes, he would look every owner/manager in the eye and shook their hand before and after. He stayed the entire time regardless of rain, sun or snow. He said the relationship with clients was integral to sustaining our stations status quo. And without it, no growth is possible. He also had a strong opinion pertaining listener treatment. If they took time out of their day to come all the way to wherever our remote was, respect is due to them. Even the perpetual attendees we all knew by name or reputation.
3) What makes your market unique? How does this compare to other markets or stations you have worked at?
Shamrock has picked up where others have left off. We've re-upped KRZQ and KWNZ, two heritage stations. We've also improved on a genre that needed an infusion of youthfulness and fresh blood.
KZTI, our Martini station is like nothing else. We've also brought some much needed variety to talk radio. It all feels fresh and new. Like they say, "tomorrow is a new day with no mistakes in it." I feel like that's what's happened. A new day has begun!
4) What do you view as the most important issue facing radio today?
Relevancy and keeping the public interested. What do we have that they can't find anywhere else? The answer to that is exactly what we need to jump on and don't let go.
5) What is it about your show that you feel really makes it unique?
I treat people how I like to be treated. I don't want anyone yelling in my ear or putting me through ridiculous hoops for prizes or requests. I don't want to hear anyone droning on and on about things they find important or funny. Ever since my first overnighter on KWNZ, I tried to enhance my listener's lives just a wee bit with tidbits that inform, teach, or make them smile. This is something that helps me feel that I have made a difference. I'm a firm believer that regardless of what you do, you can make a positive difference in someone's life. We all have a choice and I repeatedly choose that.
6) How do you prep yourself for your radio shift?
I check out our show prep and a couple of other quirky websites. I get into the mood for whatever station I'm heading to. Each has a certain air, feel, voice level and attitude. I check for anything new and any giveaways. I pinpoint what I want to focus any social media posts on. Then I do a little dance and I jump in! The dance is very important. I suggest you try it!
7) How are you using social media to market your radio station and your show?
Our company really pushes Facebook. We're slowly branching out into other social media forms. But, as far as Facebook, I post pictures with relevant text that that will pique listener's interest. I search for something that is unique, something they won't take the time to find on their own. Anything that feels 'behind the scenes' like meet and greet pictures, hard to find information, random facts, candid station or artist pictures. Then I hone the text towards whatever point that we want to get across.
8) What type of features do you run on your show?
I really like to have a positive impact on my listeners. Every morning I do some "Fortune Cookie Wisdom" and random facts that I like to call "Melody's Musings" (alliterations are COOL!)
9) What advice would you give people new to the business?
Learn how to network. I think connecting is very important for growth and learning and will help you down the line as far as opportunities go. Get really good at being a self starter, and work that creativity muscle. Come up with your own ideas for promotions and features. Don't wait for somebody else to do it. Blaze your own trail or enjoy the stagnation.
10) What's the best piece of advice anyone's ever given you? The worst?
"Respect the listener and they'll remember it and respect you."
Anytime I've been told to be something I'm not, it has not ended well. Once I was told to always do as upper management and consultants have told me. Hmmmm...? I don't go completely off the beaten path, but going off on a tangent here and there never hurt anybody!
Who is your best friend in the business?
I'm the type to get along with most everyone! I have many friends in the business, but I'd say "Miss Nicole Slater" from Mount Wilson FM in Los Angeles! I've learned a ton pertaining to social media from her. Plus she's a crack up. I collect people that crack me up.
What was the biggest gaffe you've made on air?
Nothing crazy, but one time I forgot to push the mic button and went into a stop-set with a word momma wouldn't be proud of!
Tell us what music we would find on your MP3 player right now and what is it you enjoy about that particular selection?
I run the gamut! Korn, NIN, Squirrel Nut Zippers, Beastie Boys, Johnny Cash, Rupert Holmes (don't judge), Renee Olstead, Dean Martin, Lou Rawls, Leftover Cuties, Dido, Alphaville, Book of Love, Keyser Soze, Alt J, White Stripes, Justin Timberlake, Young MC, Milli Vanilli (what?), Lenny Kravitz, Dropkick Murphys, just to name a few. I also have certain MP3s for certain moods and activities. There are songs for good days, sad days, angry days, relaxing, running, kicking up my heels. I use music to evoke what I'm in need of.
What is the biggest change that you'd like to see happen in the business?
Radio folk need to embrace ALLL that the Internet and social media have to offer!
Actually, I think those that don't embrace it may head the way of the dodo bird. There also needs to be A LOT more thinking outside the box. I feel as though we're really leaning on what we've known and what others have done before. The knowledge of previous ways of doing things is good, but subsisting on them is not.
The world is drastically different than just 10 years ago. What we did then no longer fits now. Or at least needs a serious face lift. and I'm a firm believer in playing more that 10 songs repeatedly. I get the reasoning. But a little strange can go a long way. Play a great tune no one's heard in awhile. Or something off the radar that totally fits in with the feel of the station. The unexpected can keep your listeners intrigued, and maybe highlight the strange on social media. Quirk can be good.
Please describe the best promotion you've ever been part of?
Well, I fully enjoyed a promotion we did last summer called "The Pants Off Dance Off." It was a workout/dance competition between me and our Alternative Rock station's morning guy. We had an on-air 'tiff' about our favorite dance styles and I threw down the challenge. We would both dance in front of God and everyone and loser dances "sans pants."
To prepare, we wrangled a local gym with trainers ready to duke it out (girl for me, boy for him) so we'd have the battle of the sexes allure, too. We trained diligently for seven weeks. It's amazing what the prospect of utter, almost-naked embarrassment can do to your dedication level.
We also incorporated local dance studios to give us a little training, local clothes shops and jewelers and salons to help make us look good. We had our trainers and each other on our respective shows to rally the support of our minions. We made it into a huge event at a nightclub with stand up comedian hosts from Reno and San Francisco. We handed out signs with our faces on them so attendees had to choose a side. There were local celebrity judges scoring each round. It was pageant style evening wear, bathing suit, talent and the "Pants Off Dance Off" itself. Of course, my opponent lost and danced "pantsless." But I was so proud of my 8% body fat loss that I joined him! Everything was in trade so, there was no cost and every business was thrilled with the exposure and outcome.
Of all the skills you have gained through the years, is there an area you'd like to improve?
I have a ways to go as far as "shmoozing." I realize it's importance, but I lack the innate skill. But I believe almost anything can be learned. Slowly but surely. and there's always room for more social media skills. Things change too often and quickly to get complacent.
What is the one truth that has held constant in your career?
Being me is the only way to go. That's the only thing each of us really has going for us (regardless of what those consultants say. :) I'm a little quirky, a little geeky, a little sexy and real. I'll stick with that!