Brazos Trails 10-27-2011
HOT Fair has worst PR year ever
I was invited to the stockyards for the 21st Red Steagall Cowboy Gathering Saturday.
I wasn’t there ten minutes until I was met by Gary Brinkley, a former Baylor Business major. He said he was in charge of the 78 acre Stockyards.
He directed me to the right place and another gentlemen pinned a badge on me that admitted me to all functions they were having. First he had his assistant get the golf cart and take me to the right place.
Then they directed me to the hospitality room. Rebecca Brian was in charge of media credentials and reservations. She invited me and assisted me with credentials. They called her and she met me at the hospitality room to see what I would need to cover their events. She was a big help.
The HOT Fair would do well to take some tips from Fort Worth and other events.
In the early years we tried everything to help promote the fair. Even working my self sick.
Used to they would issue us press credentials. They even took our pictures for the badges.
Gradually things got worse until the last two years they didn’t recognize us as a local media. Guess they did the same to other media.
As a result we cut our coverage to two inches on page one.
My experience with the tokens is the same as others. I planned to get a drink and maybe a hamburger. I noticed a coke was $3. Perhaps the tokens made the prices go up.
Then I tried to gamble a quarter on the Bellmead Lions game. But my plumber friend Kenny Willis said they couldn’t take any real quarters. Only tokens.
So I figured the fair lost about $15 I would have spent there. I went outside to Burger King. They were able to take my money.
The nice ladies in the fine arts bldg. have been increasingly upset with fair officials. They have squeezed them down to at least half the size they used to have.
Since the fair didn’t recognize us a local media, I had no interest in putting their winners in our newspapers.
Contrast this with the Stock Show in January in Fort Worth. It’s a world of difference. They sent me a form asking what events I would like to
cover and what day I would want to go to the rodeo.
Plus if I can’t make it to Fort Worth they will cover for us and send us what we want (at no charge).
Another experience was at the Johnson Ranch the night we were invited to see the statues before they go back on top of the courthouse. Michelle Smith met me at the door and helped me the whole night getting what I needed. When she had to do something else, she said stay here and she would come back to see about me. She had a bigger camera than I did, so I expect some good pictures from her. Her job at Johnson Roofing is to assign workers to jobs.
Bill Johnson knows the value of PR and advertising and goes all out when he feels he has an important event. He has his people assigned at every turn to help visitors. The fair could learn something from Bill Johnson too.
- Brazos Trails: May 5, 2011
- Brazos Trails August 4, 2011
- Brazos Trails 7-28-2011
- Brazos Trails 8-18-2011
- Brazos Trails 5-19-2011