My first job in marketing was…
For my father at his ad agency when I was in high school. He used to hire my friends and me to go to the local mall and do intercept interviews… so unlike most people in our industry I started my career in research!
Biggest career accomplishment?
Started my first business with a partner in 1988. The accomplishment was to actually take the plunge.
Biggest career disappointment?
I expected my business to be an immediate success. We were using digital video and online data gathering in the early 90s! Unfortunately, we were way ahead of the times and struggled trying to sell technology for marketing research purposes. Who needs that?
Biggest marketing challenge facing you or your company right now is…
We market ourselves as experts in the Hispanic market. I have been extremely successful in positioning myself as the guy to call if you want the best Latino consultant. Even the name of my company, Hispanic Research Inc., leaves no doubt as to our area of expertise. The issue is that clients see us ONLY as Hispanic market researchers and I have a tough time convincing them to hire us for general market work. I sometimes need to remind my clients that I do speak English!
In five years, I would like to be…
I am slowly beginning to delegate a lot of the day-to-day research logistics. Eventually I would like to get involved only at a consulting level. I see myself doing a lot more public speaking and writing in five years.
The best marketing book I’ve ever read has been…
There have been quite a few, but what comes to mind is an old book that my father gave me a long time ago. “How to Become an Advertising Man” by the legendary ad man James Web Young. I have an original 1963 hardcover showing a $3 price tag. There were many editions after that but the book is now out of print. Great marketing book!
The best thing about being a member of the NJ AMA Chapter is…
That it gives marketers in NJ the opportunity to personally connect at a local level.
Social media is so…
Overwhelming! The only way to stay on top of SM is to give up on the idea that you can really be on top of SM.
If I was not in marketing, I would be…
A photographer! I actually worked as a photographer at a wedding studio while in college and am still passionate about photography. My son is currently at Point Park University in Pittsburgh studying photography.
My best career advice would be…
Set your goals; have a direction; but do not worry too much about it! Enjoy what you do now. Success is best measured one day at a time.
LET’S HAVE SOME FUN
Dogs or Cats?
Definitely dogs! We lost our Bernese Mountain Dog a few years ago and it was very difficult for me.
Beach or Mountains?
I love both! But I love the beach in the summer and the mountains in the winter. I do not like to escape the seasons; I love snorkeling and snow skiing!
City Life or Country Life?
I prefer living in suburbia. I live halfway between NYC and Philly; which is great. But I am also between the Poconos and the Jersey Shore!
Star Wars… all of them!
Okay… also a very old marketing book AND a spiritual book: Og Mandino’s “The Greatest Salesman in the World.”
I enjoy a lot of different music. One all-time favorite is the late Celia Cruz.
Favorite iPhone app?
iWhat? No… I do not “i” anything. I bought the very first Android phone almost four years ago and picked up the Motorola Xoom tablet on the day that it was released.
My wife and I had the most wonderful time at Little Dix Bay; in Virgin Gorda, BVI.
Where would you most like to visit that you have not already?
I have not been to the South Pacific… I would like to tour those islands someday.
If I could donate $1 million dollars to any cause or foundation, it would be…
We donate to a non-profit called Mayan Families; which is a wonderful organization. They help very needy families in Guatemala. We are very connected to Guatemala because my wife and I adopted our two younger children from that beautiful country. Second in my heart would be the St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. I have toured the hospital- they are amazing!