Tag Archives: USC

Lane Kiffin Woke Me Up

Posted on March 23rd, 2011 | Leave a Comment

Photo: Luis Sinco / Los Angeles Times

Last night I awoke at 2:30 a.m. from a bad dream where the USC Trojans were trailing the UCLA Bruins.  Yes, I dream about football.

Bear with me, I’ll get to a relevant point.

In the dream, USC trailed by 7-points with 3:30 left to play when the defense scooped up a fumble. Instead of attempting to drive for a game tying touchdown which would at least force overtime, USC head coach Lane Kiffin elects not to run an offensive play. Instead, he kicks a 49-yard field goal cutting the lead to 4-points.

Craziness… I know. I woke up thinking why would a coach make a move like that? Sure, it closes the gap and potentially preserves enough time to go for the win, but it also paints the team into a corner. The only option available for the Trojans would be to get the ball back on defense and drive for a game winning touchdown.

It actually made me think about viral video. Many companies want to create the next great viral video, but that quest does bring risk. Groupon created a Super Bowl ad I’m sure they hoped would go viral the next day. It did, but for all the wrong reasons. Using the Tibetan people’s oppression as a gag offended a lot people and turned out to be an embarrassing failure.

Creativity is a great thing, but don’t confuse creativity with boldness.  Businesses striving to be bold need to avoid painting themselves into a corner where winning is the only option.

I’m not saying don’t go for it. Everyone’s risk-reward threshold is different.  Just keep your eyes open… and maybe a good PR pro on standby.

–Tony Gnau

Think Before You Vlog

Posted on March 16th, 2011 | Leave a Comment

My dad taught me a valuable lesson when I was a kid. I might have been eight or nine years-old when I said something insensitive to my mom. My dad was furious but it didn’t lead to a tirade. He simply leaned forward, looked me in the eye, and said, “Think before you speak.” I’ll never forget that.

I’m guessing Alexandra Wallace didn’t get a similar lesson when she was a kid. Wallace is the UCLA student who filed a video blog on YouTube ranting about Asian students in the library talking on their cell phones.

This is a teachable moment for businesses that have employees blogging or vlogging. Think about your message before hitting the upload button because once it enters cyberspace… it’s out there.

Now, I know there’s a movement advocating unfiltered content. Keep the message “real.” I get it and to a certain degree I’m with them, but there’s a big difference between being guarded and being smart.

Businesses need to be smart with their social media. Be open and share… just be smart about it. It’s a lesson this UCLA student learned the hard way.

–Tony Gnau

p.s. did I mention she attends UCLA?

High Marks For NFL Hopeful’s Draft Video

Posted on March 10th, 2011 | Leave a Comment

Finally… a sports agency with some vision! I’ve pitched several agents in the past on the idea of producing an NFL Draft video for their clients. I’m glad to see someone is jumping onboard… even if it wasn’t T60 creating the video.

USC Trojans tight end Jordan Cameron is entering this year’s draft. He also has a YouTube video hyping his abilities courtesy NBA Slam Dunk Champ Blake Griffin.

Do I think this is going to improve his draft status. Maybe. Cameron isn’t the biggest name on the draft board, so maybe a little extra exposure gets him some needed attention.

Where I think the video will really have an impact is after the draft. Whichever team selects Cameron, many of their fans will immediate Google “Jordan Cameron,” and what will they find? A fun video they can share with other fans. He instantly becomes a marketable figure for that team, and he hasn’t even played a snap.

That’s the power of video and how it can work for individuals.

–Tony Gnau

SIDE NOTE: I wonder if anyone had to explain to Jordan and Griffin that their video mimics the famous 1989 Nike ad campaign featuring Michael Jordan and Spike Lee. USC’s Jordan and the Clippers’ Griffin had to be in diapers back then! :-)

Positive Attitude, Successful Leader

Posted on February 17th, 2011 | Leave a Comment

Gini Dietrich blogged yesterday about positive attitudes being an important component to successful leadership. I couldn’t agree more.

A positive attitude can influence everything you do. It’s something I see all the time on video shoots. You can plan all you want, visualize all your shots in advance, but chances are once you get to the location you’ll have to throw it all out the window.

Things rarely go as we envision them. How you react and adjust to them will determine how the situation turns out. A positive, upbeat reaction will likely produce the same result.

Want to see what a positive leader looks like?  Just watch former USC head football coach Pete Carroll (now the Seattle Seahawks’ head coach).

“Something good’s just about to happen.”

–Tony Gnau

VIDEO: 60 Minutes “Coach Carroll” (2008)