10 Questions with ... Maurice "Mo Better" Rivera
January 19, 2016
BRIEF CAREER SYNOPSIS:
- WRPS/Potsdam, NY
- KTFM-KTSA/San Antonio
1. What got you into radio?
WRPS, the college radio station in Potsdam, NY. They needed to expand the music selection with a basketball team 98% African American and no Rap or R&B so I decided I needed to support the team and listeners by bringing in the NYC Hip-Hop vibe.
2. You moved from programming into sales. What prompted the move?
$$$ and Golf. With the revolving door in sales these days, I started selling part-time to help my GM and before I knew it $$$ was rolling in.
3. What was the biggest challenge in the move from programming to the sales department?
Worrying about the brand we had built. Not being sure if the next programmer would or could handle the madness of breaking music while keeping our local music list intact.
4. When you first started in the sales department, what was your biggest misconception about sales?
That sales was a separate entity in terms of a radio station. If your sales, programming, and promotions departments are not in sync, you are destined to fail.
5. How does your programming experience help you serve your clients?
My knowledge of our brands. When I speak to clients, I can talk about the music, marketing, and promotions available because I have been on that side. So I think I have an edge on other account execs in that regard.
6. Any advice to programmers about working with their sales departments?
Listen! If you don't sell, you don't eat. While GMs and GSMs want their execs to sell if programmers don't work well with sales they'll replace them.
7. Do most of your clients have a decent grasp of social media and how to use it to their advantage?
LOL, hell no! Most employees at radio stations across the country do not understand that social media is a viable extension to what you do on air. Use social media to drive that traffic to listen and to engage on station websites and increase your revenue.
8. What do you like to do in your spare time?
Family first! Golf second.
9. Aren't you involved in SXSW this year?
Yes! This year I will be moderating a panel "Radio 411: The Do's and Don'ts of Getting Radio Airplay." This is a must for anyone who wants to know the ins and outs of how to submit their songs for airplay and to educate labels that programmers do more that sit on their asses all day. I have Beata Murphy from KIIS, Nikki Nite from Entercom in Austin, and Vonn Butler from GTM/Snake Nation as my panelists. http://schedule.sxsw.com/2016/events/event_PP49569
10. What do you miss most about programming?
Breaking music. Seems like no one does the research anymore to discover that next big hit.
When are you going to move home to New York?
Do you have a job for me? As much as I would love to move back home, I don't know if my kids would be ready for the incredibly insane fast pace of the Big Apple. (But you never know)
Every market has its charm. What about living and working in Memphis makes you smile?
The cost of living is the biggest thing. There are also some very incredible golf courses out here. Also, if you need to get away you have options since it seems like almost everything is within driving distance.