Jinny Laderer, vCreative, Inc., Babson Park, FL
By Jerry Vigil
This month’s RAP Interview visits with another fellow Creative who has managed to find success with her own business. But this isn’t the usual story of a production person turning major voice pro or creator of a fabulous imaging library. Jinny Laderer has found success making life easier for other radio Production Directors, Traffic/Continuity Directors and salespeople. It’s the vCreative PPO, or Paperless Production Order. While the product sounds like the answer to all our production prayers, it’s the story behind this product and this company that we focus on. Jinny, and her husband/partner John Laderer, offer a wonderful example of what can be accomplished when your set your mind, and your heart to it. And while the vCreative PPO sounds like an amazing product, the cost to your station is even more amazing. We won’t tell you what the cash deal is; call and be blown away by that affordability on your own. But we will tell you about the barter deal, the only one this editor knows of that wants your overnight spots, and not so they can sell them to sleazy late night advertiser types, but rather to outreach ministries.
JV: Your start in radio was a bit out of the ordinary. Tell us about it.
Jinny: Well, actually, I was born into radio. My dad owned a radio station when I was born. He owned a station in Ashland, Ohio, WNCO. He was part owner. And so radio was always something that paid our bills growing up. But I had nothing to do with that radio station. My dad was the owner, and he had people running it for him. What happened from there is, I ended up getting married to someone who’s in radio. At the time, he was a sales manager and later became a GM. That took me into the whole world of being the wife of a radio manager.
We worked at many different stations, and it was always small market; so when you’re a small-market General Manager, you do everything. You are usually the GM and the Sales Manager, so you did the sales meetings. You’re usually the Program Director. You do news. You do all the community events and remotes and promotions. We were constantly doing things with the radio station, and that was just a part of our life. Radio encompasses every part of your life because it is an around-the-clock type of a job. So I was always around it, and we had four children and moved around to many stations.
JV: Did you work at the stations?
Jinny: Not at first. When our youngest went into preschool, I was a Mary Kay consultant. I had earned my car and was doing that at home and was able to be with the kids. We had four kids, so that was a full-time job, but I was able to do the Mary Kay thing on the side. Then in 2000, one of the salespeople at the station who was one of my Mary Kay clients, she always thought I was very creative, and she said, “You know, I really could use help with copywriting. Is that something you’d be interested in doing?” I said, “Sure,” and my husband at the time gave me a Wizard of Ads manual, the book by Roy Williams. I read it from cover to cover and got really excited about it and began writing for her, and she was paying me per script.
That developed to where they actually had me come in and voice one of the ads that I had written. I had never done any voice work and was terrified. But they recorded me, and then later we’re driving down the street and my kids said, “Mommy, that’s you.” I’m like, “What?” I turned it up and I couldn’t believe it. It didn’t even sound like me. At least I didn’t think so. I didn’t recognize my own voice.
But that’s how it started. Then my youngest went into preschool, so the kids were in school, and my husband asked me to be a full-time, in-house copywriter for them. So they created a position for me, and within two weeks everyone was saying, “You ought to put her on the air.” So I started voice tracking the afternoon show. From there, I started doing live shows, Saturday morning live, and then was doing remotes, filling in for whoever was off. I started doing the noon, 4:00, and 5:00 news, and then I started covering news stories. I even started doing telemarketing for two hours a day. I would sell small packages for things like Administrative Professionals Day or Mother’s Day, graduation packages. They were the Grace Broadcasting things, and so I would sell those.
JV: Where and when was this?
Jinny: This was in early 2000 through 2002 in Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania. It was a very small market, so you did it all. There was a very small staff. Eventually, I was kind of dubbed the Production Director because at that time the salespeople would just take it to whatever DJ they wanted to voice it, and there was utter chaos around the production order. Things were missing. We had missing spots, and our Traffic Director was also the receptionist, and she was always pulling her hair out. We were always pulling our hair out trying to find out what happened to these spots.
And so it began where we really needed somebody to take the reins, and one of the things I’ve always loved doing is organizing and coming up with better systems. So I set out the task to come up with a new production order and a new system. I came up with something that I thought would be really good. I was just trying to find more efficient ways to get more done in every day, because I was doing so much. I was actually very frustrated at the time because I’d be working 14-hour days sometimes just trying to get it all done. I would get home after the kids were in bed, and I’d work until midnight and then come back and do it all again the next day.
The whole thing that was frustrating me was the production order, tracking everything down, and things not being filled out. You spend so much time just running around looking for the information that you need, trying to contact people or trying to find what happened to this spot or where’s the old spot and all that kind of thing. So that was my main task.
At that time, I worked for Renda Broadcasting. They had multiple stations, and they had some stations down in Florida, in Fort Myers and Naples. There was a gentleman named Andrew Frame who worked down there, and Andrew had kind of put the word out to the GMs or whoever, if anybody needed some help, he was trying to put together some networking between the different station groups. So I was given his name to contact, and he took me under his wing and within one year took me to levels that were amazing… the things that he taught me. And there was also Nic Natarella in Naples. Those two both were Renda Production Directors, and they really took me under their wings and took me to a whole new level of understanding. They literally taught me everything I knew. I remember the day Andrew said to me, “I want you to write down where you are right now, and you’ll be amazed in one year where you’re at.” He was absolutely right.
He opened my world up. He taught me all about Cool Edit, and we started taking production to a whole new level. Salespeople’s sales were going up because they were so excited about these new ads. We would trade voices, and I would go to Andrew and ask him about scripts. What was and is really neat about Andrew is that he’s never afraid to tell the truth, no matter what. It wasn’t about my feelings; it was about making me better. He never said, “That’s a great ad.” He said, “That’s a good ad. It would be much better if you changed it to this or if you did this.” Or he would encourage me to reread it and do it differently. He gave me different skills, and he constantly challenged me to be better. I learned that, over time, when you surround yourself with people who are better than you, and you have a willingness to learn, it’s amazing how quickly you can grow and where that will take you.
I was like a sponge. Everything they taught me, I was so excited about, and it was a very exciting time in my life, and I learned a lot from Andrew. He also had a whole network of people that he introduced me to, and all of them have remained my true friends to this day. They’re like family to me.
JV: Where did you go after Renda in Punxsutawney?
Jinny: It was a very exciting time, but it was also becoming a very personal, devastating time for me. I began to see things that were hidden to me before in my marriage, and unfortunately, in 2003, I put in my resignation because of it and ended up filing for divorce a couple months later. I went through the divorce and had to leave that position, not really sure what I was going to do. I started my own freelance company, and I went to a lot of the clients that I had been doing ads for and began taking them on as clients.
I also took a job at a station in another town near us, as a salesperson, and that was quite the experience, becoming a salesperson, because there’s this natural thing… I mean, production, traffic, and sales are like three totally different animals. The personality types have to be different. You’ve got the salespeople, who are just hunters. They want to sell. They’re out for the kill, but they don’t want to skin it; they don’t want to clean it; they don’t want to have to prepare it to get it on the air. They just want to sell the spots, and then move on to the next kill. They really don’t want to have to deal with the details of putting in a production order, a broadcast order and get it all done, and so they forget details like start date or end date, or they forget to tell you if it’s a 30 or a 60, or they’ll tell you “Make it real creative” and then give you an address to work with.
It was maddening as a Production Director, and traffic was always pulling their hair out. They’re the hub of the entire station. Traffic, to me, are the very detailed, perfectionist people, and you have to be that type of person to make it in that job, because you’re crunching numbers and you have to be able to make everything work and fit. So they have to be very precise. And so they’re frustrated dealing with salespeople, who are very spontaneous and usually just that whole personality style.
Then you’ve got the production people, who are creative; and I truly believe, in order to be a successful Production Director, it’s almost a requirement to have ADHD because almost everyone I’ve ever met, we were all either disorganized, to a point, or trying to get organized. But we love our time alone and we can get totally consumed. I could spend six hours producing in front of Cool Edit and not even know six hours went by. Most people cannot do that. I can be super-hyper-focused into that. But don’t make me crunch numbers. Don’t make me go sell. Just put me in a room by myself and let me create. Leave me alone; don’t distract me.
JV: How long did the sales thing last?
Jinny: It only lasted about six months, and I was starting to actually get pretty good at it. But I came at it from a production point of view. I got very creative with some of the sales that I was making. I had one car dealership who just absolutely refused to go with our station. He had his set stations that he went with, and I was trying to sell him. It was a Christian radio station. That day I walked out of the door with my tail between my legs because he finally just said, “You’re wasting your time; don’t come here anymore.”
So I went to a pizza shop for lunch to get a piece of pizza, and the deal was that you could buy one slice for $2.99, or you could get an entire pizza for $4.99. I’m like, “Well, I might as well get the whole pizza and take the rest home to the kids.” Well, I ate one piece, and I had the rest of the pizza sitting on the car seat beside me, and I’m going by the car dealership again. I don’t know what came over me, but I zoomed into the parking lot, took in the pizza, and I handed it to him and all his buddies. They were all standing in there, and I said, “I brought you pizza.” And he’s like, “What?” He opened it up and he goes, “You brought me a half-eaten pizza. I can’t believe you did that.” I said, “Well, I ate one slice.” And I continued, “But I want to tell you that you’re missing a piece of the pie by not advertising on our station.” I said, “Because you’re getting all them, but you’re missing these people here, and they’re very loyal listeners.” And he’s like, “That’s good, but I’m still not buying it.”
So later that week, I stopped at McDonald’s and got an apple pie and took it to them. By then it becomes almost a joke, but it was fun. We were building a relationship, and I ended up making that sale. I had a few other sales, and they were really starting to come in, and it was kind of exciting. But here’s the thing that was so eye-opening about sales: I was so exhausted at the end of each day. I can’t tell you how tiring it is. And then you have to come back and remember everything that everybody told you and fill out these production orders.
JV: Slowly but surely, you’re laying the groundwork for what’s to come.
Jinny: I will never forget the day that the Production Director contacted me at home and said, “I’m trying to get caught up for tomorrow.” He says, “You put in an order for this ad, but I don’t know if it’s a 30 or a 60. You forgot to mark it.” I just hit myself on the forehead and said, “I can’t believe I did that.” That’s the thing that used to drive me crazy about salespeople, and I’m doing it. I’ve become one of them. It was mind-boggling. But when you’re in that role, you just have different frustrations and different things you’re dealing with, and your head is going a mile a minute with all these things that you have to get together. So having that position helped me.
JV: So, six months of sales, then what happened?
Jinny: What happened was, my ex-husband, who was the GM, was let go at the stations I used to work for the year before. By this time, I had my freelance business going, and it was going very well. I was doing the sales position and had literally doubled my income from when I was working for him. When the owners let him go, the owners and the two VPs of the company contacted me and said, “We’d like to meet for lunch.” I’m thinking, “Oh, no. They want to get all kinds of information from me.” But as soon as we sat down, they said, “We don’t want to talk about your ex-husband. We would like to find out what it’ll take to get you to come back to work for us.” He said, “The salespeople all really talk highly of how well you were doing and that they really miss your production, it really helped them with their sales, and they’re really missing it.” I don’t know what welled up inside me, but I looked him straight in the face and said, “You can’t afford me.” I don’t know where it came from. It’s just not me. I’m really not that type of person, but it just came out. I just didn’t think that he could offer me what I was making. I said, “Plus, I don’t want to go back where all of that was, because there was so much that happened. There’s so much personal hurt that happened there.”
So they ended up coming back and countering. I told them what I was making, and they came back and offered me something more. They offered me the Creative Services Director position at a station group in another location. Honestly, it was the best opportunity that I had ever seen. It was doing exactly what I wanted to do again. It was tough to leave, because I was just really starting to see some success from sales, but I took the job in Indiana, Pennsylvania, with Renda Broadcasting again. They consolidated four stations together at that time, and I was the Creative Services Director.
It was a very exciting time because we were rebuilding, and they gave me a lot of freedom. They’d say, “What do you want?” I’d already learned so much about getting organized that I was able to say, “Hey, this is what I want: I want all of the CDs burned onto a hard drive. I don’t want to have to be putting CDs in, trying to find music. It’s so much easier if they’re right there.” I was able to get networked between the production room and my office computer, so I didn’t have to take up production time. I could be producing right from my office and then go in and upload them later.
We set up all kinds of perimeters. I used to go out with the salespeople on sales calls, and we would talk with clients and come up with new ideas. It was a wonderful thing, and then I won my first award. It was a PAB, a Pennsylvania Broadcasters Award for production. I was involved with two awards that first year, and then a few later on as well. It was a very exciting time of growth and really being able to do things the way we wanted.
JV: How did your software program for organizing the production process come about?
Jinny: At this station, salespeople were on the upstairs floor, and production and all of the programming were on the first floor. These are state-of-the-art facilities. This whole new building was just incredible. But there was still that frustration of not being able to get out of work on time because of all the last-minute revisions and tracking down these production orders and missing spots at the end of the day -- when everyone’s gone and everything’s merged, and you can’t get out of the office because, well, we don’t know where this spot is.
I came up with a system of clipboards: This stuff has to be done today; this stuff starts tomorrow; these are spec spots; these are waiting on something. I had all my clipboards, and so every time a salesperson would come in, I’d have to shuffle through these clipboards and put it into the proper place by date and all of that. It was very time consuming when you have 12, 14 salespeople coming in one after the other.
I started seeing a pattern that it was 11:00 and I had not done a single thing yet because I had only been interrupted by salespeople and traffic all morning. Then I’d start to organize everything. I’d have a couple hours to start getting organized. I never ate lunch, because that was my only quiet time when no one was in the building.
Then they would come back at 2:30, 3:00, and they’d start again. So at 5:00, I’m just pulling my hair out. I can’t get anything done. These salespeople won’t leave me alone. They asked questions like, “Hey, do you remember that spot we ran three months ago for this dealer? Do you still have that? Can you find that for me?” or “Hey, I need to make a revision.” I mean, it was just constant. Or, “How are you coming on that spot?” There were days when I just wanted to scream at them, and there were days that I actually did, and that’s not my personality. But it was very frustrating, and traffic was always frustrated. We were always the last ones there. We could never get home on time, and it was just crazy.
I began dating a guy that I’d met at a class reunion, and he had also gone through a divorce. We were dating long distance. He was a computer program specialist for the United States government, and he writes workflow management programs. So he sat in my office one day because I was going to be taking him to the airport later. He sat in there and was doing his work from his laptop. Halfway through the day he goes, “This is absolutely ludicrous. No wonder you never get home.” He said, “I can write you a program so that this is all online, and they will never have to bother you again.” I’m like, “Are you kidding me?” He goes, “No, tell me what your workflow is.” I really didn’t believe he could do it. I just said, “It’s too complicated. You have no idea all the different things that can happen here.”
But he began to write the program, and we began to use it there. We ended up getting married in October of 2005. We got married live on the radio, on the morning show. The whole team there, the whole staff kind of wanted to do that, and we finally gave in. We were just going to have a very simple wedding, go to the justice of the peace because we’d both been married before. We didn’t want anything major, but it ended up being pretty sweet. They sold sponsors for it and everything. It was pretty cool.
But at that time, he had written this program, and of course, as I was leaving, the salespeople were like, “You can’t let her go. We need her creativeness. We need these ads that she’s able to do for us.” So the GM came to me and said, “Hey, is there any way that we can hire you through your freelance company to continue producing for us?” I said, “Absolutely,” and we came up with an agreement. It was going to be a three-month trial, and we were going to be using the software, the workflow management system that my husband had created.
It was just a great success. It was as if I was still in the building, but I didn’t ever get interrupted. I had all the information I needed at my fingertips to produce for them. Everything was right there. Traffic could see what was going on. Everybody could see it instantly, and everyone knew where every spot was at every moment.
JV: So you’re out on your own, and the workflow system is in actual use. What came next?
Jinny: As we moved into 2006 and this system was going so well, I met with a good friend of mine, Michael Pearson-Adams. I call him “Gomez.” He’s a good friend of mine, and he had started a company over in Australia, and he’s now in the States. He works for Waves software. He met with my husband and me in a conference call, and he had seen our system. He said, “You are sitting on a goldmine,” and said, “Every station in America needs this. I’m in radio stations constantly, and I’m telling you, they need this.” I said, “I know they do, but how do you go about starting?” So he told us how to do that, what we needed to do.
From there, the first step was getting a business plan. We hired somebody to come in and work with us to do that. We had some stations beta testing. We brought on National Voice Exchange to use our system. They were looking for a system that would manage what they were doing, and so they became a very nice client right away, which really helped us.
So we began this whole process of what is now called vCreative PPO. But at the time, it was very scary because it was all new territory. We went through this marketing plan. We were talking about doing trade shows and how we would advertise. You list out everything you’re going to do and what it’s going to cost and what you need to do, and I’ll just tell you right up front, it’s a very scary thing.
But basically, we took the advice of Gomez and a few other people we consulted. We had options: we could either finance this ourselves, or we could get investors. So we did up two plans, and we looked at them, and we’re like, “Man, we don’t want investors. We don’t want the hassle of people breathing down our throat, telling us how to run our company.”
My husband and I love to renovate and do things, so we flipped a house and used that money for startup. Then we took out equity on our homes, and we used all of our savings. We decided we’re going to go full force with this. We put everything we had into this.
At that time, my husband had looked into different conferences, and I told him we probably want to do the RAB and the NAB and some other different things. We had all these things listed, and he was looking up prices. We were still putting the final touches on our marketing plan. One of them was we had to still come up with our name, because it was TL Creative Advertising, LLC, which was my original company -- TL stood for Toni Lee, which was my on-air radio name.
So it was TL Creative, yet we were calling this Virtual Creative Services, or the VCS system, at the time. Our marketing consultant said, “That’s just not catchy. It’s too wordy.” We had a whole list of ideas, but we didn’t really know what we were going to name this thing. John had contacted Mark Levy at the RAB to ask some questions, and Mark contacted us in early December and said, “Hey, we have three booths left for the RAB in February. Do you want one?” And we’re like, “We’re not ready. We’re not ready.” I’m thinking, we don’t even have our name picked out. He said, “Well, when are you going to be ready? Because sometimes if you don’t jump, you might never jump.” And that really hit me hard.
I called my husband, who was out of town at the time and said, “Here’s what he said. If we don’t jump now, will we ever jump?” He said, “Let’s do it.” So I called Mark Levy back, and I said, “Okay, we’ll take the booth.” We had to pay a pretty big lump sum right then, so we we’re committed. But then he e-mails me right back and says, “We need you to fill this out with your company name and your logo.” Now I’m swallowing really hard.
So we went through this list. We had narrowed it down to maybe five names by that time, and we just decided on vCreative Inc. We came up with the logo in a day, and we sent it all off to Mark Levy. We had about a month and a half to get ready for this show. We worked 16- to 20-hour days for the next six weeks to get ready. We were beta testing, and we were making sure that everything was just right on target with that. We did all of our own brochures. We did everything. We were getting as much in place as we could, and we had our whole heart and soul put into this. So we went to the RAB, and the rest is really history. It took a lot of hard work, but within six months, we hired our first employee, and then we hired another one, and it’s really grown.
JV: That’s a great story of getting a business started.
Jinny: Well the best thing for me from the RAB was meeting with the other vendors and realizing that every single one of them started out like we did. You talk with all those vendors during the day, because all the people are usually in classes, and then they come into the booth area during other times. So you have a lot of time to meet with all the vendors. What we learned was that every single vendor pretty much started out just like us, even the big guys. And hearing those stories gave us the confidence to know that everybody starts out like this, that you don’t just become a big company overnight. You don’t just become successful overnight. There is this time of growth and beginning. We met with a lot of people that had just started in the last several years. PromoSuite was huge for us because PromoSuite offers a software system for promotions. We’re totally production, completely different, but very, very similar, both paperless systems. And Rocco’s story – he’s the owner of that company – is identical. It’s just about three or four years ahead of us, but hearing how they started just gave us that little boost to go, “Okay. This is how companies start, and now we just have to continue to grow.”
We decided again not to go with investors. We were at a point where we can grow fast if we get the investment money, or we can grow slow and grow into our own britches and add people as we need, and that’s what we decided to do, which has been very, very successful for us. We want to keep it very personal. And so that’s where we are right now.
JV: Tell us about the software. What does it do?
Jinny: It is a paperless production order system. You know how, early on in my career, my frustration was sales, traffic, and production. 100 to 200 production orders might go through a radio station each week, depending on how many stations and salespeople there are. There are revisions, and there’s so much that can be missed, and if a salesperson forgets to put 60 or 30 on the order, everything stops. Traffic has to hunt them down. Salespeople are always asking where things are. Now they can track everything.
The program is web-based. They put the order in online. Everyone logs in. And it’s role-based, so salespeople only see what they need to see, and nothing else. Traffic sees only what they see, nothing else. And production pretty much sees everything. But they all have their own things that they can do. So when a salesperson submits the production order, it instantly goes to traffic and production, automatic e-mails are sent. Then traffic is sitting there and they can assign the cart number, enter all their information into the traffic system that they use, and click “schedule” and they’re done.
Usually, you handed in this piece of paper to traffic or e-mailed it to traffic, and then traffic would have to then send it on to production. Sometimes it would be 4:00 in the afternoon, and traffic would give me five orders that start tomorrow, and we’ve got to produce them. That was very frustrating. That doesn’t happen anymore. Now they can see everything in real time, and everything is time-stamped, so everything that’s done can be tracked and traceable. And all the information is right there, so where a salesperson used to write something down on a napkin and shove it under your door, or they’d attach little notes here and there, it’s all right there. The script, all the notes, everything is right there, and then it’s archived forever so you can bring it back with a click and extend the schedule if needed. Salespeople can see what’s expiring, so you don’t have to get on their butts all the time about it. There are required fields, so salespeople can’t forget things.
What started happening with our beta testers was, instantly, traffic was saying, “Salespeople are getting their stuff in way earlier than they ever have, and everyone’s able to go home.” These are the things we started hearing: “We’re going home on time. We’re not frustrated anymore. We know where everything is.” Sales managers and GMs started saying, “We’re having less make-dues. We’re having less missed spots, so we are not losing money on these spots that we’re missing or the wrong one’s playing.”
And you talk to a Production Director who uses this system, and they can’t praise it enough, because they’re no longer interrupted constantly throughout the day. Basically, they can sit in their office, produce and write all day, and see everything that’s going on. They don’t ever have to shuffle another piece of paper or file another piece of paper or wander or track something through e-mail. It’s all right there for them at all times.
It’s exactly what I wanted as a Production Director and as a salesperson, and that’s where it came from. It was built from the ground up. It was built from people who work there, not from somebody that’s way up here saying, “Okay, let’s build a system for these people whose shoes we really don’t walk in,” and then they’ll try to create it. It really needs to be created from the bottom up so that you know their frustrations.
And it’s constantly changing because every new station we bring on does it differently, and so there’s a lot of features you can toggle. They want things to do this, and this group doesn’t. This group wants this; this group doesn’t. So when we’re setting them up, there’s a bunch of features that they can have or not have. It tracks all the streaming for those stations that stream, but some don’t stream. There’s a whole digital section that handles all of that.
We’re constantly adding new features. We encourage “feature requests” where this system is constantly being built and rebuilt and enhanced by new feature requests from Production Directors, from salespeople, and from traffic. Sometimes it’s just for one station; sometimes it’s good for everybody.
So that’s basically what it is, and it’s very exciting to be a part of that.
JV: About how many stations are using your system?
Jinny: One neat thing about the system is it’s a network. So a station can network with any producer they want. For instance, the stations in Pennsylvania, all eight of them still outsource to me. And because I’m so busy now running vCreative and doing a lot of day-to-day things, I have producers that I use. The orders come in from the salespeople that I worked with up in Pennsylvania on a daily basis. Sometimes they want my voice or they want something that I had been working on. This or that one has been my campaign, and I’ve kept those because that’s the heart and soul of where I still am.
But I have a couple producers that I work with, and with just one click, it then goes into their inbox. So they produce it, and it goes back to the station. Any station can connect with any producer or voice talent or copywriter that they want, and a lot of stations do that. They’ll form their own voice pool within their company. Citadel is one that’s doing that, as well as Federated Media. They’ve started their own voice pool. And I think Citadel is definitely our largest group – I want to say there are over 70 Citadel stations that are using it. Each Production Director will put their voice people in there, and with one click, they can put it out to a Production Director elsewhere. Let’s say the one in Saginaw wants a voice from one of the guys in Wilkes-Barre. They can send that copy, and that person can voice it, and it comes right back in their inbox. It’s just very, very neat and tidy. Everything you need is right there.
Some of the other stations that we’re working very closely with are with Entercom, and we have a lot of smaller groups that have some of their stations on board. We’re really going little by little. National Voice Exchange is a client that has brought a lot of stations to us as well.
I know we have over 300 stations in our system that are using it in some fashion, and then we have quite a few producers and voice talents who also use the system. We bid for spots. There’s a client of ours, and they use the system to outsource when they need production, and they send it in to me. Then I handle it here, and I have writers and producers that I’ll go to when the work comes in. I can outsource it to them, and so I spend a lot of time doing that each day. The work comes in through the system, and I decide who’s going to voice and those types of things and get it to the appropriate people. And those are clients, so it’s not just radio stations. It could be agencies.
It’s very multifaceted and very much a creative network of people. Anybody can connect, but the relationships have to be built. They don’t all see everybody in there. Everybody only sees what they see, unless we make that connection.
JV: You are doing a very special barter deal with vCreative PPO. Tell us more about that.
Jinny: Well, when the economy tanked back in the fall of 2008, we were working with quite a few station groups who basically were about to sign and said, “We’re putting a freeze on all new spending.” They’re like, “We can’t do this.” At that time, I began looking into offering barter, because a lot of them said, “We could barter,” but I didn’t know how to go about that.
So I began looking into the options -- Dial Global, Premiere, those types of barter options so that stations could do it, and we thought, “Hey, this is great.” So we were about to start up with some of those when all of a sudden they’re like, “Nope, we don’t want to barter with Dial Global.” I’m like, “What? So now what do we do?”
I have a very strong faith, and I’ve also gone through a lot of really difficult times in my life, and I really began feeling like, wouldn’t it be cool to be able to take these airtime minutes and use them for outreach ministries who are trying to reach people who are struggling with addictions, abuse, depression, all the different things that we struggle with in life? These things affect people’s lives, and there are just an incredible amount of people who are suffering.
So we began to take minutes in the evenings and overnights, and we call it the Radio Recovery Initiative. This is still in the very infancy stages. It began last May that we began doing this, but we now offer barter options if they don’t have cash. They give us minutes in the overnights, which they usually have more of, than their 6a to 7p. Then we’ve already begun testing with some outreach ministries, and we’re in some new phases of developing it all. But eventually, all of those minutes will be used specifically for this. It’ll be very much like PSAs that we’ll be running. And our goal is just to recoup the money that we were going to get but, at the same time, be able to help people, which has always been a very huge passion of mine, to help people through some of the things that I experienced in my life. Everyone has their own way of dealing with things, but really, that’s my ultimate goal.
JV: It sounds like you have nothing but great success ahead of you. Any parting thoughts for our readers?
Jinny: We live here in Florida, which has been a dream. When I was a little girl, I always dreamt of owning my own company, being a mother, and I always wanted six to eight kids. I wanted to live in a big, old Eight Is Enough house, and all of those things have come true. I live in Florida, and we restored an old colonial house, which isn’t the type you usually find in Florida, but it’s pretty neat. I have an awesome husband who I get to work with every single day, and we have six kids. I literally feel like it’s a dream come true. And I don’t believe that it’s destiny or fate or anything like that because I have a very strong faith. I really believe that I’ve been blessed, and I’m very thankful for every blessing that’s come my way.