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SBI "One of the best kept secrets in racing"!

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Old 07-20-2005, 12:13 PM
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Default Re: SBI "One of the best kept secrets in racing"!

working the pits in Dania all I can add is that is wasnt really advertised, people would drive by see the AMF trailer stop back up and ask whats going on this weekend! They heard nothing about it. As for the fans on the beach when the peole saw the boats running the course, they started to come out of thewoodwork to watch"north of the pier", heard the pier was full of people watching them run. Maybe a1-2 month plug on advertising the race with a strong focus 2 weeks out would spark some interest, even the west marine didnt know about the races until we had to get some parts!
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Old 07-21-2005, 11:36 AM
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Default Re: SBI "One of the best kept secrets in racing"!

Back to the media exposure...

What happened to Michelle May Schmidt? For several years, she was cranking out press releases and information on a weekly basis - even I was on her mailing list. Then all of a sudden they stopped. When I e-mailed her last year to ask what happened, she said at the merger of SBI/APBA that she was told her services weren't needed anymore.

I haven't seen a press release for the races since. Nothing sent to the APBA-racing.com website either.

Does anyone know why?

Who is the media person today?
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Old 07-21-2005, 01:18 PM
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Default Re: SBI "One of the best kept secrets in racing"!

Quote:
Originally Posted by BK
Back to the media exposure...

What happened to Michelle May Schmidt? For several years, she was cranking out press releases and information on a weekly basis - even I was on her mailing list. Then all of a sudden they stopped. When I e-mailed her last year to ask what happened, she said at the merger of SBI/APBA that she was told her services weren't needed anymore.

I haven't seen a press release for the races since. Nothing sent to the APBA-racing.com website either.

Does anyone know why?

Who is the media person today?
Without sounding like a tired caricature of myself...let me try and capsulate the reasons:

Lack of Budget........

The "downward spiral" that I referred to has cut TV and promotion budgets( like Michelle and Marilyn de Martini, and a slew of others in past years) from upwards of $100,000/race in the late 80's to virtually zero today. The cause is really quite simple....race sponsors had to pony up much more money in the old days and got much more bang for their buck....There were more entry fees (more boats)...and more fans at places like Point Pleasant,Miami, Key West...etc.. filling hotels, restaurants, bars, airline seats, rental cars and souvenier stands.

The sport of Offshore racing was never "about the racers"...That's reserved for the stock outboard hydro guys , who race for peanuts on a shoestring for the simple love of racing. Offshore is and has always been about money....in many cases more than an individual , even with substantial means, can either afford or, at the very least, justify. While a lot of the team money came from some very high rollers like Bernie Little, Al Copeland, Tom Gentry....as well as a slew of "bad guys" who made their money on the wrong side of the law, the vast majority of promotion money came from major and minor corporations like Budweiser, auto dealerships, Benihana, Hennesey, Mercury Marine, HFC and others.

None of these companies want to play anymore.......... because they grew weary of the increasingly divided, inconsistent, financially fickle, unreliable, confusing, badly televised and uncompetitive nature of the sport for the past 15 to 18 years.

All of this....... every bit......started at the moment the sport divided. Look it up..... National TV network exposure, big purses, fleets of 100+ boats on average, 4 National classes, and huge festivities at every race site were the norm through 1986.... At that point, cocky with power and abundant success, the sport splintered. Every faction with a gripe, big boat owners, little boat owners, west coast racers, long distance marathon proponents, short course proponents...etc, etc....... pulled in opposite directions....divided the loyalties, the fan base, the sponsors, and now the future of the sport itself.

So folks there is no promotion money, no enthusiasm, only the sound of a bell in the distance.

Is that the gong of unification........?

Or is Offshore racing......for whom the bell tolls?

T2x

Last edited by T2x; 07-21-2005 at 01:21 PM.
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Old 07-21-2005, 01:44 PM
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Default Re: SBI "One of the best kept secrets in racing"!

Fragmentation does hurt this sport - and that is the disease harming a number of boat racing categories. Unification and tradition work - but it takes years to build a healthy fan base. When you interupt the progress, you are interupting the growth of the sport.

Back to marketing;
Here's an example of what another series did as budgets evaporated:

The ChampBoat Series Marketing Director position went away due to budget restrictions this year.

But does that mean NO media exposure? No way.

One of the owners of the Series compiles the press releases himself. They are sent to the various media outlets Before, During and Post race. He takes his laptop to the races and types the info right on the spot and e-mails it out to dozens of outlets. It doesn't cost them a thing.

I even saw the ChampBoat races media information on the on OSO - it is on the OSO news page.
http://www.offshoreonly.com/index.ph...id=48&Itemid=1

IMO, that can work for any of the many boat racing series; if it is not possible to hire someone, then do them yourself - get busy. The groups that rely on sponsorships and fans to stay in existence can't afford to miss ANY media attention - This *FREE* attention most of all.
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Old 07-21-2005, 02:25 PM
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Default Re: SBI "One of the best kept secrets in racing"!

Quote:
Originally Posted by BK
Back to the media exposure...

What happened to Michelle May Schmidt? For several years, she was cranking out press releases and information on a weekly basis - even I was on her mailing list. Then all of a sudden they stopped. When I e-mailed her last year to ask what happened, she said at the merger of SBI/APBA that she was told her services weren't needed anymore.

I haven't seen a press release for the races since. Nothing sent to the APBA-racing.com website either.

Does anyone know why?

Who is the media person today?
Michelle has been fighting an illness which has kept her out of the offshore picture. Hopefully, her recovery and rehab is going well and she'll be back soon.

I have to agree with the topic of this thread.

Last year, in Miami, absolutely NO ONE in town knew of the race. No banners on the main streets, at the pits... anywhere. No one on the strip knew of a race or even cared. We were still turned away from bars for wearing shorts and team jerseys, instead of slacks.

there were, however banners all over town about some stupid a$$ walkathon, which was happening the same weekend. My partner and driver always b!tched about this exact thing. Whos promoting these events? No one knows we are here and not many more care. Barring Orange Beach, and Sarasota (last year) most of the other sites were clueless as to what was happening. Very frustrating from a racers opinion, when you spend all that time and $$$, and no one knows you are coming or have arrived. And in some cases, have even been there.
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Old 07-21-2005, 03:06 PM
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Default Re: SBI "One of the best kept secrets in racing"!

I keep my boat right near the races, and I didn't even know it was going on until I saw a bunch of race boats in the ICW the day before. I hadn't been on here much that week so I didn't see anything.

You would think that if someone called a local news station they would do at least a short piece. Maybe help by having some file footage for them and a basic PR kit. Last weekend they did a story on someone's lost dog on the news for crying out loud...
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Old 07-21-2005, 03:22 PM
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Default Re: SBI "One of the best kept secrets in racing"!

I have emailed Michelle to see how she is doing... I sure hope she's doing better!

No doubt, Offshore needs Michelle back. Actually - all of boat racing could use a gal like Michelle! Over the years I watched her magic -- she is good! She knows where to focus attention.

But when Michelle does get better, and comes back - will the race organizers jump at the chance to use her marketing genius again? IMO, it doesn't sound like exposure is high on the agenda these days - not even the free kind. And that needs to change.
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Old 07-21-2005, 03:26 PM
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Default Re: SBI "One of the best kept secrets in racing"!

Quote:
Originally Posted by jaybird
You would think that if someone called a local news station they would do at least a short piece. Maybe help by having some file footage for them and a basic PR kit. Last weekend they did a story on someone's lost dog on the news for crying out loud...
You are so right. Check out this story about the Inboard races this weekend:

http://www.theoaklandpress.com/stori...50721007.shtml

This racer, Adam Wilson, said he e-mailed a simple letter about his team to 27 different media addresses he found online: The result of spending one hour sending an e-mail was this article in the Newspaper.
A **FREE** article in the News that thousands of people are reading! That works!
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Old 07-21-2005, 03:39 PM
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Default Re: SBI "One of the best kept secrets in racing"!

Boat Kitten:

Sadly, volunteer (non-professional) created press releases frequently read that way and are passed over by the major media..... Secondly, all interest evaporates as soons as competing offshore results and announcements arrive at the same sports desk trumpeting different sites, classes, and most importantly, sanctioning bodies. Like it or not, at one time The APBA had its own weekly releases emanating from headquarters in Detroit and these were bolstered by news releases from sponsors, race sites and teams....offering redundant data on specific events...... That makes a reporter's job easy and clear cut. Remember these guys are not experts.....their job is to make something simple, concise and interesting. Give them a release that says "Supercats, F2's, super vee lites, super vees, super cat lites, super cat lite Outboards, F1's, P1's, p2's, p3's, p4's, p5's, bat boats, and the vaunted Unlimited Super boats clashed at St Augustine under the SBI/APBA banner which for the 3rd time this season joined forces with OPA.!"....... on the same day that they receive a release stating "Offshore Super Series invades a lake in Tennessee (Offshore?) with a dozen classes!"....and you begin to understand why the reporter skips quickly to Lance Armstrong's stage lead in the Pyrenees..... and that's before you try and explain why some classes are "bracket racers"?????

This whole mess needs to collapse and re-start with a simple, concise, clean sheet of paper...... with a view from outside the forest.......not in the leaves.

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Old 07-21-2005, 03:45 PM
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Default Re: SBI "One of the best kept secrets in racing"!

Quote:
Originally Posted by T2x
Boat Kitten:

Sadly, volunteer (non-professional) created press releases frequently read that way and are passed over by the major media..... Secondly, all interest evaporates as soons as competing offshore results and announcements arrive at the same sports desk trumpeting different sites, classes, and most importantly, sanctioning bodies. Like it or not, at one time The APBA had its own weekly releases emanating from headquarters in Detroit and these were bolstered by news releases from sponsors, race sites and teams....offering redundant data on specific events...... That makes a reporter's job easy and clear cut. Remember these guys are not experts.....their job is to make something simple, concise and interesting. Give them a release that says "Supercats, F2's, super vee lites, super vees, super cat lites, super cat lite Outboards, F1's, P1's, p2's, p3's, p4's, p5's, bat boats, and the vaunted Unlimited Super boats clashed at St Augustine under the SBI/APBA banner which for the 3rd time this season joined forces with OPA.!"....... on the same day that they receive a release stating "Offshore Super Series invades a lake in Tennessee (Offshore?) with a dozen classes!"....and you begin to understand why the reporter skips quickly to Lance Armstrong's stage lead in the Pyrenees..... and that's before you try and explain why some classes are "bracket racers"?????

This whole mess needs to collapse and re-start with a simple, concise, clean sheet of paper...... with a view from outside the forest.......not in the leaves.

T2x
I think this post pretty well sums it up.It would be great to see a re-birth of the sport in the near future witha simple concise format of a limited number of classes competing only on courses in the ocean.
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