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The Advantages of Selling and Hosting by Jason Minnix

Jason Barrett



When I started my career in upstate New York, I had no business being on the air. I was brand new to radio, and aside from having some knowledge about sports and listening to a lot of WFAN talk shows, I wasn’t trained or prepared to be behind a microphone.

But since I was working for a small privately owned radio station with minimal expectations, I was able to convince the owner to give me a chance to host my own show on the weekends. That allowed me to earn reps and make my fair share of mistakes so I could improve and one day be considered for bigger opportunities.

JB at WTBQTo earn that one hour of air time, I had to go door to door selling sponsorships to local businesses. The deal was simple, bring four sponsors to the table, and you’ve got your shot.

I wasn’t going to be denied so I put on my sales hat and went to work and within two weeks, I fulfilled my obligation and had signed up four clients. The owner was so impressed that after the first few weeks of shows, he rewarded me with an extra hour.

I took that job very seriously, including making sure my clients were happy. If I couldn’t bring them a large audience, I was going to make sure they felt appreciated on the air, and every individual I knew was going to be encouraged to support them. In some cases I’d show my gratitude by sending my clients tickets to broadway plays, Nascar races, or any other freebies we had available at the radio station.

For the next two years I developed my on-air skills and eventually moved from 2-hours on Saturday’s to 2-hours each night to 2-hours each afternoon. While I continued growing as a host, I also did as a seller. Soon my four weekend sponsors turned into business deals with shopping malls, corporations, and a relationship with a memorabilia dealer which led to popular New York athletes coming to town for autograph signings which I hosted my show and sold sponsorships around.

I was making more money selling the show than I was receiving for hosting it. Although my goal was to get paid to host and not be involved in sales, it was too good financially to pass up. As luck would have it, one of those autograph shows ended up featured on the front page of a local newspaper, and that caught the eye of a General Manager at a larger local radio station, which led to my next opportunity.

As I moved on to focus on hosting and programming on a bigger stage, my days of having to sell advertising were behind me. Despite eliminating those responsibilities, I never lost sight of how important sales were to a radio company, or how difficult the job was. I’ve tried to keep that in mind when programming radio stations and interacting with sales departments.

minnix3For this week’s piece, I called on Jason Minnix of ESPN San Antonio because he has a very unique background. I’ve gotten to know Jason a little bit over the past six months and had the pleasure of meeting him in Philadelphia during the Army-Navy game in December. What stood out to me was how he wears two different hats for his employer. He’s the host of afternoon drive alongside former NFL player Dat NGuyen, and he’s one of his station’s top sales people.

When you first hear of someone doing sales and hosting, the quick assumption is “if they’re paying to be on the air then they’re probably not that good”. It’s a stigma that many individuals have to fight to overcome.

What I’ve discovered over the past ten years of working in this business is that this particular formula can be very lucrative for some people, if they have the passion, patience, knowledge, and focus to pull off dual roles.

timFor example, in St. Louis, Tim McKernan hosts morning drive on CBS Sports Radio 920. He also runs the entire operation. Ten years ago Tim was a guy making a good radio salary to strictly be an on-air talent. But he had bigger plans. He focused his time on developing his own media company InsideSTL, and built it up by selling ads, creating events, and turning it into a profitable business.

That then led to buying air time on radio so he could control the inventory and cross marketing opportunities available to his radio program and media company. By using that approach, he made more money, and put himself in position to now run the radio station, instead of just making a check for hosting a talk show. I can appreciate that type of hard work and hustle.

On the national level, Yahoo Sports Radio hired Matt Perrault to serve in a dual role. Matt had hosted shows during his career in Boston, Omaha, Des Moines, and Huntsville and during one stop in New Hampshire, he served as General Manager and Host for Absolute Broadcasting. By taking on added responsibilities beyond hosting a show, he was able to develop a deeper understanding of the radio business, and help provide a better living for his family.

mattSince joining Yahoo, Matt has gone from working in Houston to operating out of the Palazzo Casino in Las Vegas. By embracing the hybrid role, it’s helped Yahoo expand their reach into a city where entertainment and money go hand in hand, and that in turn has helped Matt expand his profile along with his wallet.

Please understand that not everyone is equipped to do sales and on-air hosting. Radio operators need to remember that before putting people on the air who belong inside a cubicle, not behind a microphone. I see these situations take place occasionally and no matter how a company tries to spin it, the brand is devalued the second the audience hears a poor content presentation. For every McKernan, Perrault and Minnix, there are great sellers who can’t broadcast, and hosts who can engage an audience but couldn’t sell a band aid to a person who’s bleeding.

Fortunately for the purposes of this column, Jason Minnix has been successful doing both, and he’s been kind enough to take the time to explain how he does it and how it’s paid off for him. If you’re interested in pursuing a similar path and would like to learn more, feel free to contact Jason. He can be reached on Twitter by clicking here or on Facebook by clicking here.

The Advantages of Selling and Hosting by Jason Minnix

All of us on the programming end of the building have heard that the only way to make money is in sales. Every host has also been told to tie themselves to as much revenue as possible, but understand that the real money is on the sales side. Most on-air personalities don’t want to give up their microphone to do sales, but I have managed to do both and now I couldn’t imagine having an on-air job without a sales component.

minnix1Honestly, I never wanted to do sales. In 2005 I had to because I needed a job. A friend told me I serviced my endorsement clients better than most reps and that I should get into sales. He was looking for a sales rep so I took the job doing sales with some on-air components at a small News Talk station and had success.

In 2007 before ESPN San Antonio launched, we included sales responsibilities in my job description. There was some reluctance on the part of the station but with it being a brand new station they let me try. We officially launched ESPN San Antonio in February 2008 and as we approach our 8th anniversary, the station, my show and sales are strong.

I am not a pay-for-play radio host. I am a full-time talk show host and a full-time account executive. I am often asked how I make it work. It starts with the support of management. My sales manager and PD understand my dual-role at the radio station.

minnix5Time management and focus are the keys to doing both sales and on-air hosting. I generally get to the office between 8:30a and 9a and work on my sales duties until about 1p. Then I shift into show mode. My co-host Dat Nguyen and I start putting the show together at 2p and we’re on the air from 4-7p. Once I get into show mode, my focus is on the show.

There are many advantages to being on-air and selling. When I call on a client and they listen to my show or at least know my name, chances are I am going to get that meeting. I get more callbacks than most people do in sales because of my on-air position.

As the rep and host , the client is dealing with the guy on-air that is going to execute the plan. I have more protection of my show because I won’t promise a client something that I know I can’t or won’t do on the air. Essentially I have cut out the middle man for my clients.

minnix4All on-air hosts are selling in one way or another. You’re selling content to the audience. You’ve gone to lunch with a client to help an AE close business. You’re reading LIVE endorsements during your show. Sure you’ll get paid a talent fee for it, but you can get a lot more.

How many times when on remote or through social media has somebody asked how they can advertise on your show and you’ve passed that contact information along to your sales team? Think about how much money you just handed off.

Doing both jobs is not for everyone. You have to be organized, great at time management and willing to put in the work. It’s not easy but when I see my paycheck every month, I wouldn’t want it any other way.

Barrett Blogs

Jeff Catlin, John Mamola, Gordy Rush & Maggie Clifton Join The 2023 BSM Summit Lineup

Jason Barrett




We’re less than two months away from the 2023 BSM Summit in Los Angeles. This year’s conference takes place on March 21-22, 2023 at the Founders Room inside of the Galen Center at USC. Many industry professionals are set to attend but sports media folks tend to be a last minute crowd whether it’s buying a ticket, reserving a room or committing to be a sponsor. Yes, tickets, rooms, and a select few sponsorships are still available, but the longer you wait, the more you risk not being in the room, featured as a partner, and paying higher prices for travel. To make sure you have a seat and a place to stay, log on to For sponsorship inquiries, email Stephanie at

I am really excited about this year’s Summit. The venue is tremendous, the agenda is coming together nicely, and there’s no doubt we’ll have great weather when we gather in LA. Some have asked me why I don’t reveal the full schedule of sessions months in advance, and it’s because I believe in swinging for the fences and trying to do big things. To do that, you’ve got to be willing to invest time and explore every opportunity that can be impactful. It’d be much easier to fill the schedule and be done with everything but if it’s going to take a little longer to deliver the best speakers, discussions and experiences for all in the room, then that’s what I’m going to do.

Those involved in the creation of this conference know that I set a very high standard for it. We’ve run some great events over the years, and it’s because we put everything we have into making sure each session is valuable to a different segment of the industry. My goal each year is to present an action packed agenda that helps people learn, gain access to information to improve themselves and/or their brands, and create a few connections and memorable moments to justify it being worth a few days away out of the office or studio. If we can do that, it makes the sacrifices worthwhile. If we can’t execute at a high level, then I’d probably pass on doing it.

Before I tell you about the four people we’re adding to our speaker lineup, I do want to remind you that we recently announced a contest for California college students. We’re giving away ten (10) FREE tickets to the show courtesy of Steve Kamer Voiceovers. If you know a student in California please let them know about this. If they’re not in California but want to attend the event, we’ve created a special college rate to make it affordable for young people. Everything is listed on

Now, for the new additions to the lineup.

I’m excited to welcome Jeff Catlin of The Ticket in Dallas to the Summit. This will be Jeff’s first Summit visit, and I appreciate him making time to share his programming wisdom with the rest of the room. Jeff will be part of a programming panel that kicks off day #2. That panel will include Jimmy Powers of 97.1 The Ticket in Detroit, Raj Sharan of Denver’s Sports Station 104.3 The Fan, and our next addition, John Mamola of WDAE. John has been at all of our events dating back to our first test event in Chicago. I’m looking forward to giving him an opportunity to offer his programming insights alongside this talented group.

Also joining the Summit lineup is Maggie Clifton, Blue Wire’s Senior Vice President of Business Development. Maggie has played a vital role in growing Blue Wire’s revenue, and I’m looking forward to having her join Barstool Sports’ SVP, Head of Sales Matt Berger, and Magellan AI’s Chief Revenue Officer John Goforth on a panel that focuses on digital monetization.

Guiding that conversation will be Guaranty Media’s Gordy Rush. The Baton Rouge Vice President and General Manager who doubles as LSU’s sideline reporter on football broadcasts is well versed in monetizing content, and understanding the opportunities and challenges broadcasters face. I’m confident those in the room charged with maximizing digital revenue for their brands will gain great value from these four professionals.

There’s much more in the works that I’m looking forward to announcing in the coming weeks. Whether you own a company, manage a cluster as a GM, lead a sales team, host or produce a podcast or radio/TV show, buy advertising, oversee a brand’s social media strategy or program a network or local outlet, there’s something for every sports media professional at the BSM Summit. I invite you to come see for yourself. To do so, visit

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Barrett Blogs

Jimmy Powers to Receive The Mark Chernoff Award at the 2023 BSM Summit

“Jimmy received the most votes from our industry panel to become our third recipient of the Mark Chernoff Award.”

Jason Barrett




As a former programmer turned consultant, I pay more attention than most to those who lead brands, manage talent, and create consistent success. When you look across the country at the hundreds of stations delivering sports radio content, and analyze who operates at a high level, there’s maybe ten to twenty who are changing the game, and others who are rising and hoping to become a bigger part of the conversation.

What makes this annual award special in addition to having Mark Chernoff’s name on it, is that it’s voted on by eighteen industry heavyweights. These are folks tasked with overseeing radio companies, major networks, and having exceptional track records of broadcasting success. So when they vote and an individual earns an honor, it means a little more.

If you’re in the business and follow sports radio, then you’re aware of Mark Chernoff’s accomplishments as a program director. He was one of the true architects and consistent winners, and his ability to excel as a sports radio manager has influenced and shaped many careers. Mark graciously agreed to be part of our awards ceremony a few years ago when I approached him with the idea in New York City. I’m thrilled to share that although he doesn’t attend many industry conferences on the west coast, he will be with us at the 2023 BSM Summit in Los Angeles for the ceremony.

Which brings me to this year’s winner.

It is my honor to congratulate the leader of 97.1 The Ticket in Detroit, Jimmy Powers. Jimmy received the most votes from our industry panel to become our third recipient of the Mark Chernoff Award. He follows Rick Radzik of 98.5 The Sports Hub in Boston, and Mitch Rosen of 670 The Score in Chicago. Jimmy will be in attendance at the Summit to pick up the award, and will take part in a program director panel at the show. Further details on that to be shared next week.

“It’s such a great honor not only to be mentioned in the same breath with Mark Chernoff, but to receive the ‘Mark Chernoff Award’ is really, really cool” shared 97.1 The Ticket Program Director Jimmy Powers. “With so many great program directors across the country who are deserving of this award, I truly appreciate the recognition.”

Since late 2009, Powers has led the Detroit sports radio station to unmatched local success. Brought in to build upon what was created by the late great Tom Bigby, he’s helped The Ticket become one of the format’s best examples of success. The station has consistently dominated the Male 25-54 demo, while also becoming a ratings force with Persons 12+ and Adults 25-54.

“Jimmy has done an amazing job over the years running 97.1 the Ticket,” said legendary sports radio programmer Mark Chernoff. “He knows how to work with talent, and maintain balance while managing relationships with the Lions, Tigers, Red Wings and Pistons, which is not an easy job. The ratings remain high, and the Ticket continues to be one of America’s top sports stations, which reflects the great work Jimmy has done as the station’s program director.”

In addition to delivering double digit shares, quarterly ratings wins, and presenting a star studded lineup and Michigan’s top sports franchises, The Ticket has taken home plenty of hardware too. The station has won the Marconi award for best sports station in 2016 and 2022. And now, they can add the 2023 Mark Chernoff Award to their trophy case.

“2022 was another big year for The Ticket, and many in Detroit deserve credit for the brand’s consistent success, but none more so than their exceptional brand leader, Jimmy Powers,” added BSM President Jason Barrett. “Jimmy has been a staple of consistency, guiding one of the crown jewels of sports radio, managing top personalities, important play by play partnerships, and helping the brand generate large revenues. I’m thrilled that our industry voters took notice of the fantastic work Jimmy has done and look forward to celebrating his career and accomplishments in Los Angeles this March.”

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Barrett Blogs

California College Students Earn Chance to Win 10 Free Tickets to the 2023 BSM Summit Thanks to Steve Kamer Voiceovers

“In order to win tickets to attend the Summit, students must submit a 2-minute video by email explaining why they’d like to be in attendance and what they hope to learn at the event.”

Jason Barrett




With a new year comes renewed energy and optimism for the sports media business. Yours truly is looking forward to showcasing the best our business has to offer when we gather the industry in Los Angeles, CA at the 2023 BSM Summit at the Founders Club at the University of Southern California on March 21-22, 2023. Our conference is returning to the west coast for the first time since 2019. We’ve announced some super talented speakers. We’ve got additional things in the works and I plan to make additional announcements in the next few weeks.

People often ask me what the biggest challenge is putting this event together. My answer is always the same, it’s getting people to leave the comfort of their office and spend two days in a room together learning and discussing ways to grow the business. We have great sponsorship support and exceptional people on stage and are fortunate to have a lot of folks already set to attend. Our venue this year has extra space though, so I’m hoping a few more of you make time to join us. If you haven’t bought a ticket or reserved your hotel room, visit to make sure you’re all set.

If there’s one thing our industry could get better at it’s opening our minds to new ideas and information. There’s more than one path to success. Just because you’re in good shape today doesn’t mean you will be tomorrow. Building brands, growing audiences, increasing revenue, and examining new opportunities is an ongoing process. There are many shifts along the way. We may not solve every business challenge during our two-days together but you’ll leave the room more connected and informed than when you entered it.

Each year I’ll get two or three emails from folks sharing that they learned more about the industry in two-days at the Summit than they have in ___ years inside of their building. That’s truly gratifying and what I strive to achieve when I put this event together. I remember when conferences like this didn’t exist for format folks and I take the risk and invest the time and resources to create it because I love the sports media industry and believe I can help it thrive. I see great value in gathering professionals to share ideas, information, and meet others who can help them grow their business, and if we do our part, I’m confident some will want to work with us too. That’s how we benefit over the long haul.

But as much as I focus on serving the professional crowd, I also think we have a responsibility to educate young people who are interested, passionate, and taking steps to be a part of our business in the future. The BSM website is visited by hundreds of thousands of people each month and it’s become a valuable resource for folks who enjoy sports radio and television. I think it’s vital to use our platform, influence and two-day event to connect generations and I’m happy to announce that we will once again welcome college students at this year’s Summit.

Most of us who’ve been in this line of work for two or three decades learned the business without podcasts, YouTube, social media, the web or conferences delivering two full days of sessions that taught you more about the business than what’s available inside of a class room. We learned by doing, and hoping we were right. Then we copied others who had success. Some of that still exists, and that’s not a bad thing. But where our business goes in the future is going to be drastically different.

I’d like to see the difference makers in our format remembered for years to come, and practices that have stood the test of time remain valued down the line. Change is inevitable in every business and I’m excited about the road that lies ahead especially some of the technological advancements that are now available or will soon become a bigger part of our industry. I think we can embrace the future while enjoying the present and celebrating the past. The best way to do that is by bringing together everyone who is and is hoping to be a part of the sports media universe.

So here’s two things we’re doing to make sure future broadcasters have an opportunity to learn with us.

First, I want to send a HUGE thank you to Steve Kamer Voiceovers. Thanks to Steve’s generosity, TEN (10) college students will be given FREE tickets to attend the 2023 BSM Summit in March. Steve is a USC graduate (Class of 1985) and he bought the ten tickets to help young people learn about the industry, save money and make valuable connections. When I first received his order, I thought he hit the wrong button. I reached out to tell him a mistake was made and I needed to refund him. That’s when he told me what he wanted to do for students who were pursuing their broadcasting dreams just as we both did years ago. A very classy gesture on his part.

As it pertains to the contest, here’s how it’s going to work.

To win tickets to attend the Summit, students must submit a 2-minute video by email to explaining why they’d like to be in attendance and what they hope to learn at the event. Included in your email should be a list of steps that you’ve taken or are pursuing to explore opportunities in the media industry. If you want to pass along a resume and audio or video clips too to showcase your work and experience, that’s fine as well. BSM will accept submissions until February 17th. The winners will be announced on Friday February 24th.

Helping me select the winners will be an exceptional panel of media executives. Each of these folks below will choose one person to attend our L.A. event. The final two will be picked by Steve Kamer and myself.

  • Scott Shapiro – Senior Vice President, FOX Sports Radio
  • Justin Craig – Senior Program Director, ESPN Radio
  • Jeff Sottolano – Executive Vice President, Programming, Audacy
  • Bruce Gilbert – Senior Vice President of Sports, Cumulus Media & Westwood One
  • Amanda Gifford – Vice President, Content Strategy & Audio, ESPN
  • Jacob Ullman – Senior Vice President, Production and Talent Development, FOX Sports
  • Greg Strassell – Senior Vice President, Programming, Hubbard Radio
  • Scott Sutherland – Executive Vice President, Bonneville International

To qualify for the BSM Summit College Contest, students must be enrolled in college in the state of California, pursuing a degree that involves course work either in radio, television, print or the digital business. Those attending local trade schools with a focus on broadcasting are also welcome to participate. You must be able to take care of your own transportation and/or lodging.

This is a contest I enjoy running. We’ve had great participation during our prior two shows in New York City but haven’t done it before on the west coast. I’m hoping it’s helpful to California students and look forward to hearing from many of them during the next month.

For students who live out of state and wish to attend or those enrolled at local universities who enter the contest but aren’t lucky enough to win one of the ten free tickets from Steve Kamer Voiceovers, we are introducing a special two-day college ticket for just $124.99. You must provide proof that you’re currently in school to take advantage of the offer. This ticket gives you access to all of our sessions inside the Founders Club. College tickets will be limited to forty (40) seats so take advantage of the opportunity before it expires.

The 2023 BSM Summit will feature award ceremonies with Emmis Communication CEO Jeff Smulyan and legendary WFAN program director Mark Chernoff, sessions with influential on-air talent such as Colin Cowherd, Jim Rome, Joy Taylor, and Mina Kimes, big picture business conversations with executives from groups such as Audacy, iHeart, Bonneville, Good Karma Brands, Barstool, The Volume, Omaha Productions and more. For details on tickets and hotel rooms visit

I look forward to seeing you in March in Los Angeles!

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