Tag Archives: routine

Revamped Radio

March 18, 2017 by
Photography by Bill Sitzmann

When the band Train came to Omaha’s Baxter Arena for a concert in December 2016, there were plenty of flashing lights and excited fans. “But when the lights go out and the audience starts screaming, there’s no rush like it in the world,” says Andy Ruback, general manager of NRG Media. Ruback knows a great deal about screaming fans—when a big concert comes to town the likelihood is that Ruback had his hand in the planning. His role as general manager has evolved over the years from managing radio stations to include managing events brought to town by NRG Media Live.

The business is a natural fit for NRG, which owns stations ranging from Power 106.9 to 1290 KOIL. The company was looking to the future for broadcasting and leaning toward live shows as a way to increase profitability. NRG used their strengths in connecting people to music to expand into the business of concert production. With the radio stations’ on-air talent knowing their listeners’ preferences, the media company naturally knew what acts had potential to bring in revenue, and which ones might not.

Ruback came to Omaha from Lincoln, where he served as general manager for their NRG stations. Upon his arrival at the NRG offices in Omaha in 2012, Ruback went full speed ahead. He says the intention was never to focus on live shows over radio shows; rather, he called his plans a method for “diversifying for growth.”

Concert production is a challenge that Ruback gladly accepted, but in it, found unique bumps in the road. Some of those bumps included special requirements, such as permits, that needed the legal team’s help. Shock rocker Alice Cooper, for example, required the team to acquire special insurance because of the pyrotechnics involved with his show. Ruback and his team figured out how to get the right insurance, and now know who to ask the next time someone wants to light up fireworks onstage.

Ruback says some of the more surprising challenges he and his team have faced come from smaller, more routine details.

“I would say it’s more about the crowd experience logistics,” Ruback says. “How do we try to work with the arenas to make sure there’s enough concessions on the floor? What should be the entry ticket price? What should be the price for the front row?”

Logistics is the simplest description for the business of producing concerts. Is the specific artist available at the time? Is there enough interest in this artist to fill the seats? Is a venue available on the day needed?

“We could have the great idea, and the right price, but there could be a UNO hockey game and a Lancers game on the night we want, and we’re out of luck,” Ruback says.

It is a revenue stream in which many community businesses desire to participate, and there are many ways for them to participate, including attaching their name to experiences such as meet-and-greets with the band before or after the show, and attaching their name to souvenirs. Attendees at the Train concert, for example, vied for flashing bracelets and cups branded with a sponsor’s logo. Signage prominently displayed throughout Baxter Arena featured sponsor logos.

The scenario is beneficial to everyone involved: the band gets to play to a well-attended venue, the fans get to enjoy the band, and the sponsors get to present their message in an effective way.

“On that day, no other media group is producing a concert,” Ruback says. “So you’re looking at content that advertisers want to be a part of, but no other client can do.”

The diversification proved wildly successful. Ruback says that since 2014, more than 100,000 people have attended an NRG Media Live event. Associate athletic director for University of Nebraska at Omaha Mike Kemp enjoys his business dealings with NRG Media Live and says that when Ruback puts on a concert at Baxter Arena “… it’s not just a concert—it’s an event. He has great vision and ideas and that’s the true charm of what he does.”

“I think NRG Media does a great job of engaging the community to get behind the events,” adds Kemp. NRG Media has the ability to promote coming shows using the radio stations on their roster and their strong social media presence. This equals solid attendance numbers at concerts and happy sponsors.

“Andy’s full of energy and great ideas,” Kemp says of Ruback. “He’s an honest guy with great enthusiasm for what he does.” Rubak’s vision has evolved NRG Media into much more than an organization simply running local radio stations. In fact, the next time there is a popular concert in town, there is an excellent chance that Ruback can be found there, smiling and enjoying the rush.

Visit nrgmedia.com for more information.

This article was printed in the Spring 2017 edition of B2B.

Why Kids Need Sleep

September 24, 2013 by

Sleep is as necessary to your child’s overall health as proper nutrition and plenty of exercise. Sleep gives the body a chance to rest. It is a time in which the events we experience during waking hours are integrated into our memories, as well as a time for our bodies to make repairs from daily wear and tear.

Children who do not sleep well do not learn as well and have a higher rate of behavior problems. Additionally, they may experience more illness because their immune system is not as effective.

How Much Sleep Does Your Child Need?

So how much sleep is enough for your child? Well, it depends on your child. Some kids need more sleep than others. Boys Town Pediatrics recommends:

  • Kids 5-12 years of age get between 10 and 11 hours of sleep each night
  • Teens 13-14 years of age get between 8 and 9 hours of sleep each night
  • Teens 15 and older get around 8 hours of sleep each night

You will know when your child is not getting enough sleep if he or she is tired or cranky, has difficulty following directions, is unable to concentrate on school work, or is abnormally clumsy when participating in activities in which he or she normally excels.

Tips for Helping Your Child Sleep

The best way to help your child get enough sleep is to develop a regular sleep routine and a consistent schedule for bedtime and waking. Stick to this schedule during the week and on weekends.

Other ways to make sure your child gets the right amount of sleep include:

  • Spending 20-30 minutes before bedtime relaxing. Have your child take a warm bath or read during this time.
  • Not keeping a television in your child’s bedroom. Watching television before going to bed can make it harder to fall asleep.
  • Keeping caffeine to a minimum (i.e., soda, chocolate, coffee).
  • Monitoring your child’s television viewing. Scary or disturbing programs can interfere with his or her ability to fall asleep.
  • Not exercising before bedtime.
  • Designating your child’s bed a “sleep only” area. Reading, doing homework, playing games and talking on the phone should be done in a separate location.

When to Call a Doctor About Your Child’s Sleep Problems

If your child is having trouble sleeping, there may be an underlying cause. It is possible that a more serious condition is the cause for your child’s lack of sleep. Such problems include depression, substance abuse, or sleep apnea. If you suspect that your child is suffering from something more serious than simply not being able to go to sleep, schedule a visit with his or her physician.

Boys Town Pediatrics has offices in four locations throughout Omaha that offer weekday hours as well as extended evening and Saturday hours in some locations. Visit boystownpediatrics.org for a full physician directory where you can watch introduction videos and meet a pediatrician before you visit.

Review: Dry Shampoo

August 16, 2013 by

When I had my first baby last year, I quickly realized the luxury of spending 30 minutes blow-drying and styling my hair was a thing of the past, since getting in a daily shower was proving to be a struggle. So I went on the hunt for a dry shampoo that could cut down my morning routine. I tried a few different brands from the drugstore and salon, but many left a visible white powder on my dark hair or had a strange texture.

Finally, I found Big Sexy Hair Volumizing Dry Shampoo and now swear by this. My stylist is actually hooked, too! It soaks up the grease, plus it adds tons of volume and texture. The smell is strong at first, like hairspray, but doesn’t linger.

For best results, I first spray my roots with a bit of water and then a light spray of the product. A fast blow-dry and I’m good to go. I’m able to go two to three days between washes, which has helped keep my hair healthier than when I was washing it daily. It works great on post-gym hair, too. The size of the product may seem small for the price, but it lasts about two months when used three times a week.

Next time you’re in a hurry, give ‘dry’ a try. You just might get hooked as well.