Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Speaker Spotlight: Mitch Rosen

October 15th,  2013: Union South, UW-Madison

Just 20 years ago, Chicago did not have an all sports radio station. That all changed on January 2nd, 1992 when 670 The Score, Chicago's first all sports radio station, was founded. Sports Business Club recently had the honor of hosting the station's current Program Director, Mitch Rosen.

Mr. Rosen graduated from Winona State University. In terms of college experience, he's a true believer that no matter where you get your degree from, its what you make of the school that really counts. In college, Mr. Rosen jumped right in to working at a local radio station. After graduating from college, he worked in radio for a time before taking a detour into the agent business, representing various broadcasters as well as a notable client: former Chicago White Sox Manager, Ozzie Guillen. However, saying he "missed being around breaking news and the day-to-day of running a radio station", Mitch Rosen returned to the radio business, or as he prefers to call it, the "content business", joining 670 The Score in 2005. Mr. Rosen explained, "I'm in the content business, not the radio business. I build and oversee our brand and figure out how we can deliver our content. I essentially program, run, and manage the station, while protecting the brand."   

Mr. Rosen said that what makes The Score successful and unique is its focus, almost exclusively, on Chicago sports teams: "On a Monday morning after a Bears game, win or lose, you want to hear about the Bears. It doesn't mean we won't drift away to discuss national issues but The Score is truly the home for Chicago sports fans." Now people come to The Score instead of picking up a traditional newspaper. He spoke about how the radio business has changed as people no longer call or fax in, but use Twitter, Facebook, texting, etc. to voice their opinions on air.  Longterm, Mitch believes we will see most of sports radio making the move from AM to FM frequencies.  "I've been doing this over 25 years, I still love what I do, and I'm excited about the future", he said. 

When asked what young professionals can do to stand out to future employers Mitch said,"Internships are vital, I hire 60% of our interns." He stressed the importance of proving yourselves through internships and suggested getting to know the company you are interested in very well before going in for an interview, encouraging job seekers to "know the product" and "do your research." "Working in this business is a struggle, it's not easy but if you have a dream, go and find it. To work in this business, you need to have an opinion, you are in the opinion business."

Mr. Rosen offered an interesting perspective on another way to break into the sports industry, suggesting thinking of niche sports, such as marathons, unique races, or competitions. These events are becoming increasingly popular and are year-round endeavors involving event planning, acquiring sponsorships, creating promotional pieces, and more.

"There is no 1+1=2 in this business, there are weird ways to break into the industry... sometimes you'd rather be lucky than good... you just never know."

Get connected and learn more about 670 The Score!

Twitter: @670thescore

Thank you, Mr. Rosen,  for making the trip to speak with our members!

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