Merry Christmas From Old Port Jingles

Merry Christmas from Old Port JinglesWishing everyone a safe and happy holiday. Lily says thanks for anything that comes in a box. She loves it.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Rode NT3 Review

Rode NT3 ReviewSome mics are built with one specific purpose in mind. Others are well rounded and can do more. The Rode NT3 is a mic that falls into this category. I needed something that was going to be versatile, durable, and accurate. I didn’t want to spend an insane amount of money wanted something that was going to be simple to use. Since I’ve been using the NT1-a for a while and absolutely love it, I figured I would give the Rode NT3 a try. Here’s my review:

Review of the Rode NT3

What’s in the Box: The mic, A padded zipper case, a sticker, a clip for your mic stand, a small foam windscreen, instruction booklet.

Physical Characteristics: It fells well built, much like the other Rode mics I’ve had a chance to use. The NT3 can be powered by a 9 volt battery or phantom power from your preamp. It is roughly 9 inches long and the bottom unscrews to access the battery compartment. The battery option is one that is great to have if you’re considering using this mic with a camera for video production. It’s durability and size make an excellent choice for a field mic. There is a power switch so you don’t have to remove the battery every time you use it.

Potential Applications: I use this mic mostly for acoustic guitar and hand percussion. It Represents the high end very well with a lot of presence in the sound, and the design allows for good room ambiance. It actually records room and outdoor conversation pretty good. I imagine that this would be a great field mic for low-budget video production.

Sample Recording with the NT3

Rode NT3  Overall Thoughts: I think that this mic has multiple of uses in a home studio. It can be used to record any acoustic instruments, which is a plus, but it also sounds good when recording from slightly farther away. I like the way it sounds as a reinforcement mic. Take a listen to these two tracks.

Solo take with the Rode NT3

NT3 and NT1-a blend


The first one is the NT3 by itself, positioned roughly 10 inches from the 12th fret of the neck of the guitar. The second one is the NT3 blended with the an NT1-a located roughly 12 inches from the back of the body of the guitar. As you can hear, the two mics compliment each other pretty well. I would imagine that this would make a fairly decent overhead mic on a drum kit based on the response I was getting from it. Unfortunately I am not able to try that at this time, however other reviews of the NT3 have said that this is one of the things it does best.

I also used the Rode NT3 to record the electric guitar parts in this cover of Here Comes Your Man (Ham), as opposed to my usual SM57. Not bad.


Listen to Here Comes Your Ham

All in all I would say that this mic would make a fine addition for any home studio. It’s multiple uses make it a great asset to have.

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My Dinner With Joey – A Night With The Pixies

The Pixies have never played in Maine, so when they announced that they were coming, I was excited. My friend Dave goes way back with Pixies guitarist Joey Santiago. I had seen the Pixies before, but this was my hometown show, and I had a feeling it was going to be special.

“Here Comes Your Ham”

I had done a little catering work with Dave (who owns the Pig Kahuna, best pig roasting in the Northeast BTW), and he had mentioned that he made up a joke band, called the “Pig-sees” and had already re-named a bunch of songs- “Where is My Swine”, and my personal favorite, “Here Comes Your Ham.” I figured now was as good a time as any to see if I could pull it off. Fortunately, since I have a couple instruments at my disposal, I had a feeling I would. It was harder than I had originally thought, just because I’ve never set out to copy something exactly how it was done. Admittedly the effort was somewhat hasty, but Dave loved it.

Listen to Here Comes Your Ham

Lobstah!

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The day of the show came around 10am I get an email asking if I want to have a lobster dinner with the band before the show. Yes. Yes, I would. Not everyone could make it, but Joey wasn’t going to miss out. He arrived around 5:30, bringing our total to 8. Soon, we were enjoying a few pre-lobster drinks. I talked some nerdy guitar stuff with Joey about his equipment, which was awesome. Then Dave mentioned that I was the one who recorded “Here Comes Your Ham.” Joey told me he heard it and liked it, to which I smiled like a buffoon. He said that I took some liberties with the guitar tracks, but overall he liked what I did. He then asked what I had used to record it on. I told him about my modest home recording set up, and mentioned that I probably would have put a little more effort into it if I knew he was going to hear it.

Then he asks “How long did it take you to record it?”
“Roughly three days, on and off.” I reply.
“Oh, we recorded Doolittle in two weeks. No, wait. On second thought make that 11 days.” He says with a big grin. With that the ice was broken, and the rest of the dinner was a smashing success. Dave had enough lobster and steak for everyone to fill up on. Soon enough it was time for the show, which was amazing. If you’ve never seen the Pixies live, you should do it. Enhance any of the photos to see a slideshow from the State Theater show.

The Pixies in Portland, Maine 2011

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Pizza, Magic, and The Pixies watch the Pixies

After the concert, we met up with Joey and David Lovering, the drummer for the band. They had heard about a Pixies tribute that was happening after the show, and wanted to crash it. I couldn’t wait for this, however we “needed” to refuel with some more beers and pizza. During dinner in a relatively empty Pat’s Pizza, David started doing some card tricks for us. He is skilled in the magical arts to say the least, however the hilarity and awesomeness of getting a free magic show from the drummer of one of the most talented and influential bands ever would not hit me till later in the evening.

After dinner, we headed to the bar where the tribute show was happening. It was very busy for a Tuesday night, and it was very interesting to watch half of the Pixies watch a tribute to themselves. It was hard to get a read on how they actually felt about it, but not hard to see how shocked/excited the members of the band were when they realized who had been in attendance. Joey and David chatted with the musicians from the tribute band for a while before we all left. We took some photos together, I got my copy of Doolittle signed, and we were out. As we drove home, I just kept thinking to myself how crazy the past 6 hours had been, and realized that the “Where is My Swine” cover had better be awesome.

The Pixies in Portland, Maine 2011

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The Pixies in Portland, Maine 2011

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The Pixies in Portland, Maine 2011

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The Pixies in Portland, Maine 2011

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The Pixies in Portland, Maine 2011

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The Pixies in Portland, Maine 2011

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HUGE thanks to My friend Dave of the Pig Kahuna and of course Joey and David of the Pixies.

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Why Don’t We Have This?!

So I’m taking out my air conditioner last weekend (yes, I know it’s October, I’ve been busy!) and per usual, it’s a pain. It’s not super heavy but as most people will know who have done this, it is super awkward. I get the thing out and put it on the floor to close the window before my cats get out, and notice my amp sitting near the door. Then it hit me. My moment of genius.  Amps are heavy and awkward, but they are easy to move because of one thing: Handles. I implore you to petition your local congressman, and state senators telling them it’s high time we got handles on our air conditioners. I’m sure the fatcats down on wall street all have handles on their AC units for their servants to remove them. Lets make this happen readers of the Old Port Jingles blog!

Air Conditioner With Amp Handles

Coming next week, I review the Rode NT3 mic. So far, I’m digging it, seems like a pretty nice all purpose condenser.

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How Much Do Radio Ads Cost?

Today’s guest post comes from Bill Danziger, a writer at privatestudentloan.org.

The cost of radio ads and jingles is relative to return on investment. If within the initial stages of a radio advertising campaign, the increased sales and revenue driven by the new ad equals or exceeds the investment, then the ad/jingle costs you nothing. That would be the initial intention for any business considering a radio advertisement campaign and the hoped for outcome. The consideration of how to budget for a radio ad is different and more complex.

Why Advertise on the Radio?

Before discussing the costs of radio advertising we should understand what it is you are considering paying for. Radio ads are direct response advertising. This is a form of advertising that has a goal to create a response to the advertisement that can be quickly evaluated for its effectiveness. Direct response advertising is a quantifiable and accountable mechanism for generating specific information relating to and demonstrating its effectiveness or lack of effectiveness. Brand marketing in contrast, focuses on memory recall of a product, service or brand based on an emotion response to the ad. It does not require any action or input from the listener. The ability to assess effectiveness is delayed, often evident only in quarterly fiscal reports that are influenced by multiple factors.

The first consideration for cost of a radio ad concerns the advertising strategy and creative process. This upfront cost is essential to minimize the chance of failure and increased cost later in the process. Budget the costs of two test ads. The one that creates the best response is the test ad. If neither meets the break even threshold, redesign the ad with different content or to appeal to a different population of listeners.

Media Buying and Planning

The second consideration involves media budgeting. This is media planning and buying. In two parts, the first concerns are a test budget to assess the strategy, and review the creative and media variables affecting the fiscal outcome. While this expenditure can be daunting, it will generate response and revenue, and the intent is to bring you to the break even point. Anticipate a four week test period of review and adjustment of the ad spot to reach this goal.

Don't Burn Money

Don't Burn Your Money

Roll out

The second part is referred to as the roll out. At this juncture the creativity and production of the ad is proven viable. Your returns are above the break even margin. Now comes the time for additional investment to increase market awareness. You are motivated to spend more on media to increase return profitability.

How Often to Run a Radio Advertisement

To determine the number of stations and frequency of ad air time depends on several factors. During the test period an average of ten stations provides an adequate exposure. After, the determining factors are your business readiness to expand and the guidelines established in the original plan. When determining optimal number of sports on a particular station, remember that the cost per spot is determined by the size of the audience, bigger audience translates into more expensive. The decision then is dependent on testing and determination of what works within the context of the campaign guidelines. Nothing is ever set in stone. Radio advertisements can be tweaked at every level to produce the optimal expectations at the most reasonable investment.

So what is the bottom line? How much do radio advertisements cost? That answer is still in the testing phase. If during the testing period you reach the break even point for the initial four week testing period, the ads will generate profit and the ads cost nothing. It the testing period returns 75% of your initial investment, it will be a small cost to gain the invaluable information needed to adjust the final product and ensure a successful and profitable campaign.

Bill Danziger is a writer at privatestudentloan.org.

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USPS, You’re Doing It Wrong

Rain Soaked Wet USPS Package

Click to Enlarge

Like many of you, I order a lot of stuff online. I’m a big fan of services like amazon, newegg, and ebay because I can get stuff on the cheap. Sometimes I order things and they get shipped in insanely huge boxes, but no harm really comes of that. I read the in August that the United States Postal Service is going through some tough economic times, and is looking to make some cuts. Well USPS, it’s service like this that makes that news no surprise.

It rained pretty much all day yesterday. My bike ride into work was a wet one, and at times throughout the day it was coming down pretty hard. By the time I left for home at 4:00pm, it was still pretty wet out and misting a little. I got home to find some packages had been delivered. At first glance, it looks like a poor job putting the package in the mailbox.

Wet Mail from the USPS

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Upon closer inspection it appears the mailman created a clever rain catcher to collect as much water as possible inside the mailbox. Great technique for outdoor survival, not so much for delivering mail. Mail often contains important documents, electronics, or photos, none of which should be wet. That’s why I have a mailbox. That’s also why I have a side door and an easily accessible and visible shed. At any rate there was another package inside the mailbox, this was also soaked through.

UPS, Doing it Right

How it's done. Click to enlarge.

The same day I got a package delivered from UPS, who is doing it right. This little bag can’t cost them very much, it is extremely thin, but for the purpose of keeping something dry for a few hours, it works great. It’s service like this that will make me think twice before sending anything of value through the mail. Fortunately the things in the mailbox were clothing, but still, had they been books or electronics, it would have been a major first world problem/headache. United States Postal Service, if you’re reading this, please invest in some bags. Or instruct your workers to not do this. I want to like you, I really do. You’ve always been there, but if you keep this up, our relationship isn’t going to last.

For those wondering, I’ve added a “Packages Around Back” note in my mailbox. I hope it works next time it’s raining.

UPDATE:
This arrived yesterday from UPS. I don’t even know what to think.

UPS Hidden Package

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5 Tips on How Jingles Can Help Your Business

Yet another amazing guest blog post!

Jingles can help your businessJingles are something that most companies overlook as a way to increase profits. Here are five tips on how jingles can help your business.

  1. Stand Out From Your Competitor
  2. You want to stand out from your competitor. You want to have a jingle before everyone else in the industry regardless of being local or not. You want to beat your competitor by attracting more customers to your company using a jingle. People love jingles more than you realize. People end up getting jingles stuck in their mind from being exposed to them so many times that he or she can’t help it when they remember your company.

  3. Future Customer Remember You First
  4. Jingle will make the future customers remember you the most when they need your services or products. You’ll notice a difference in your overall profits by coming up with a jingle. People remember jingles like they do any song that they hear that prompts them to remember who the singer or band is.

  5. Jingles Make Your Company Unique
  6. Jingles will make your company unique from everyone else in the local area and online. You will set yourself apart from others in the industry. Your competitor will notice that you make more in profits from your jingle. Your competitor will try to figure out your secret advertisement methods. Ask yourself what makes your service or product better than everyone else in the industry.

  7. Use A Copywriter
  8. If you need help with a jingle then hire a copywriter that will be glad to make one up for you at a reasonable rate. Copywriters have a way with words that make it easy to come up with words that your customers will easily remember. Copyriters do ads for radio and private clients all the time on a regular basis. Check your local area for a copywriter. One of your employee’s might be able to make up a jingle using their creative skills.

  9. Play Jingles Everywhere
  10. You want future customers to hear your jingle on the radio, especially in the car. You really want them to hear your new jingle on tv and website. You want to exhaust every source available in order to get your jingle out there in front of everyone.

The five main tips are stand out from competitor, make yourself unique, and hire a copywriter. The most important tip is to play jingle everywhere possible. Make sure to put jingle on your website as well. Good luck out there!

bio: Tim understands the concept of using jingles for business, as his company cash for car does so all the time.

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Using Podcasts for Audio Marketing

Another guest blog post! This one is from Rohit Naik.

Have you ever thought аbоut making a роdcast or hоѕting уоur own onlіnе radio shоw? Thеrе іѕ a ѕlіght differеnce betweеn thе two оf cоurѕе, аnd I wіll оutlіnе the two bеlоw, аnd gіvе yоu sоme tірs on роdcastіng.

They arе bоth grеat fоrmѕ of аudіо mаrketing.

Fіrst- Onlіnе Radio

Well, іf уоu go tо Blоg Tаlk Radio, уou саn hoѕt your оwn оnlіne rаdіо ѕhоw іn an hоur frоm nоw, ѕerіouѕly. All the ѕtruсture iѕ іn рlасе thеrе for you, јuѕt рrеѕs a few buttоns аnd off уou go! Yоu аrе lіvе to thе world withіn аn hоur- and stаrt tо get уour meѕѕage оut there wеll аnd truly. All уou need is a соmрutеr аnd аn intеrnet сonnectiоn, and a сheар headѕеt- and you arе goоd tо gо.

There are еvеn lіvе сhаt roomѕ ѕo уou сan ѕee what pеоple arе sаyіng about your реrfоrmаnсe- or better ѕtatеd, gеt feеdback- gоod markеt rеѕеаrch- аnd inѕtаnt toо! No waіting mоnths for rеsеarсh reѕults! Therе іs аlso thе facіlity for реоplе rо ring іn аnd talk to уоu aѕ wеll, on an Amеrісаn number. Therе are prеmіum ассount optіоns availаblе aѕ well.

Podcasting for Marketing

Dо уоu want tо mаkе yоur оwn роdcаѕt? Let’s be clеаr on what a podcаst іs fіrѕt- it is а small, normаlly 20 minutе long rаdіo show, downlоadable, (оr tіme ѕhіfted as theу ѕау in thе trаde, beсаusе theу do lіke theіr nice tеchnісal words!!) What it mеanѕ iѕ that реорle cаn lіsten tо іt аnу timе they wаnt, (or wаtсh it- podcaѕts cаn bе visual аѕ well!- they are cаllеd Vodсaѕts- anоther tеchnіcаl tеrm!)

Sо yоu wоuld fіnd out whаt thе рunterѕ wantеd, and сrеаtе сontеnt all аbout іt, which would ѕеt уou uр аs an аuthоrity іn your nісhe, remеmber рeоple buу from peорlе thеу know, like аnd truѕt, аnd podсаsting сan, аnd doеs dо thаt reallу well.

Whу?

Well, іn а ѕurvеy dоne rесentlу, it wаs found that 37% of cоmmuniсаtіon was nоt in thе wordѕ thаt wе uѕе, but Vоiсе Tonе- 37 %- that’ѕ hugе- оnlу 5% wаs wordѕ, the rest wаs bodу languagе.

Thе rіght tone оf vоісе саn mаkе or brеаk аn іntеraсtion- aѕ I аm surе you have had еxрerіеncе оf іn thе past. Voiсeѕ are traіnablе аs well, if уou dо nоt likе the sound оf yоur own voіce, thаt iѕ trаіnable mоrе eаsily than you thіnk. Podcаstіng- an all іn onе goоd ѕоlutіon to marketing your wаres.

About the Author : This is a guest post by Rohit Naik who blogs at KBC Website . It discusses everything about KBC 5 game show.

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A Year Too Late: Thoughts on the Grateful Dead

Never Saw The Grateful DeadI love the music of the Grateful Dead. That much is plain to see to anyone who knows me. I begun to listen to it when I was around 15. I had purchased Europe ’72 and American Beauty through Colombia house (12 CD’s for a penny, remember that?) on a whim not knowing really what to expect. Soon both albums were a fixture in my home stereo and I had copied them to tape so I could listen to them in my car. Within a few months I was recording the shows on Scarlet Begonias Radio, broadcast on my local radio station. This music was better than anything I had been exposed to. I didn’t realize or understand the concept of improvisation and energy in music until I started picking apart the jams. I know it’s overused, but the music touched me. I wanted more, and surely would experience it live soon.

I was a freshman in high school when I passed up my one and only chance to see the Grateful Dead.

“Hey man, you should come to Highgate with us! We’re leaving Thursday morning.”

“I can’t. The math final is at 2pm.”

A math final. Yeah, I know.

At the time, I wasn’t concerned. I was sure I could see the Dead again. Plus, I had tickets to my first real concert later on that summer, and that would be awesome. It was a HORDE show in Old Orchard Beach, Maine. The date of that show: August 10th, 1995. As much fun as I tried to have, I couldn’t believe I had missed my chance. There was a moment of silence and I came to the bitter realization I missed the bus. The fact that all those people were silent- I couldn’t get over it. I wasn’t the only one who loved this music. This wasn’t even a Dead show, but there were fans here. There were fans everywhere.

I will always feel a tinge of sadness when I think about what I missed out on. Though I try, no amount of Bob, Phil, or Further shows can make up for it. I’m not really sure why I’m writing this. I guess I just felt I wanted to put it out there and maybe hear about others like me, or others who saw them for years. Either way, feel free to comment, so long as it’s positive.

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Using Video to Promote and Persuade

More and more businesses are choosing to use video marketing as a way to increase their customer
base, and with good reason. Video marketing is highly effective when it’s done well, and the cost of
making a video has fallen significantly in recent years. You don’t even have to live in a major media
area to get great videos made at an affordable price. You can find companies doing video production
in Nottingham, Newcastle, Birmingham, and even Dundee.

If you’ve never made a marketing video before, then you should choose your promotional video production
company
carefully. Some companies will simply follow the script you give them, whereas others
are happy to prove a lot of creative input.

What’s your message?

Before you start work on a video, it’s important to decide what your message is. Are you advertising
a sale or a special offer? Are you warning customers about something important? Do you want to
bring back former customers, or are you trying to bring in a new audience?

There are some campaigns that work well as videos and others that do not. For example, a national
chain of garages might do well if they produced a video about road safety and started promoting it
just before winter. The video campaign could run for several months, is interesting enough to make
people want to share it, and has a clear message – “Get your brakes, tires and lights checked ready
for the winter.”

On the other hand, it probably isn’t worth getting a video made to promote a one week sale at a
Nottingham clothing store. Unless, of course, you have a good relationship with a company that
does video production in Nottingham, and you can get the video made quickly and cheaply, and
promoted to a highly targeted audience.

A Call to Action

It’s always a good idea to build a call to action into your videos. You should try to encourage people
to forward the video to their friends, or visit a website, or pick up the phone. The important thing is
that the interaction with your brand does not begin and end with that one video.

If you can encourage your prospective customers to build an attachment to the brand – be that
through a mailing list, a Facebook page, or your Twitter stream, then you’ll have more opportunities
to reach them. They may not buy anything after they see that first video, but when they see your
brand a second or third time they’ll remember you, and they’ll be more receptive to those future
messages.

Before you hand over any money to a promotional video production company, it’s a good idea to ask
to see some of their previous videos. Don’t just look at the quality of the video, look at the style. If all
of the videos share the same style, is it the right one for your company? Some companies are flexible
in the types of video that they produce, but some smaller studios tend to stick to one template for
all companies – are you happy putting your brand name on one of those videos?

This post was written by James Harper on behalf of Black Hawk Productions, your first choice for video production Nottingham and surrounding areas. James writes on subjects relating to business and marketing.

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Need music for your business? Check out our customizable business jingles. Radio advertising is a great way to sell your products and reach a large audience with one of our custom music productions.

Custom songs can be a great way to celebrate any occasion! From birthdays to family reunions to roasts, music just makes everything better.

Viral marketing can be a great way to get your name out into the public eye.

Do you own a vacation home or rental property? A video is a great way to help fill up all your empty dates! Take a look at our property rental videos.

Let us make the hold music that will keep your clients calm and relaxed while waiting on the phone to speak with you.

Are you a business owner without a jingle? Let us make the song that's just what your company needs. Radio advertising with a business jingle from Old Port Jingles may be just what your next marketing campaign needs.

When you are ready to take your business to the next level, a viral video production can be just what you need. Let Old Port Jingles produce the song that will spread on the internet like wildfire! Start your next viral marketing campagin today.

Have you ever wanted a special song for a birthday, retirement, or graduation? Now you can have a song for any occasion with Old Port Jingles. From serious to comedy to educational let us make your custom song just right for you!