Andy Baggot: Insider Writer for UWBadgers.com and Varsity Magazine
Jay Wilson: Sports Director for Channel 3000/News 3 Now
Jim Polzin: Wisconsin Men's Basketball Writer for the Wisconsin State Journal
How has social media changed your career and the way a reporter operates?
JP: In today's age, it's important to be multifaceted. To be able to not just write, but podcast and use Twitter. I don't know where this industry will go in the future, but there will always be a market for storytellers and people will always care about Wisconsin sports.
What's the biggest challenge you currently face in your role? What are some of the biggest misconceptions of the sports industry?
AB: Redefining my role and what I'm writing about for the magazine. The biggest misconception about sports is the glamour of it. It's hard work and I've always done it because I loved it, not because of the glamour.
JW: At the news station, we're working on doing more with less people. That has gotten more challenging especially as you get older and have less time for work as you try to balance a family with your career.
What is some advice you would offer to students?
JW: Follow your heart. Only do what you really want to do. Listen for the voice inside you that tells you what you really want to do and then follow it.
AB: Find a mentor and someone you trust who you can bounce ideas off of and talk about your future with.
Chellee Siewert is the founder and owner of Capture Sports Marketing. Her background was in non-profits including working at the Rogers Hospital as well as the national MS foundation. She later transitioned into working for an indoor soccer team and doing a successful jersey drive to help raise money for unique charities.
Since then, she has worked with athletes such as Aaron Rodgers, Carson Wentz and JJ Watt with Capture Sports Marketing. She helped to organize Watt's assistance for Hurricane Harvey. She also worked with NASCAR driver Sam Mayer as he works to increase his visibility in the professional racing sphere to generate sponsors and funds. Other figures in professional football that she has worked with include Tyrann Mathieu and Anthony Lynn.
"When you started this what did you see it becoming and how has it lived up to expectations?"
CS: "I expected to keep it ultra small with a few team members and a few clients. It started pretty small but we've worked to grow more aggressively especially diversifying into different sports."
Chellee's Contact Info:
Jakub Kryzostaniak- Director of Fan Engagement and Digital Media at Forward Madison FC
Liz Kern- Vice President of Big Top Sports and Entertainment
Tyler Isham- General Manager at Madison Mallards Baseball Club
Why have you spent your whole career at Big Top?
LK: Excellent benefits, flexibility and they do a great job in helping to sustain people at their current position.
TI: I'm still learning everyday about my position and how to put my own spin on the organization. It was appealing to be able to have my own control as opposed to the control I would have at a larger team.
During the offseason what are you typically working on?
LK: Planning for the next season. Selling, budgeting and preparing for the next season. Especially planning and producing what are sales plan is going to look like for our next season.
TI: Ticket sales are the lifeblood of our business, the offseason is focused on segmenting for different consumers and figuring how to get them to the park. My personal responsibility is to sell corporate advertising with the team.
JK: Working on thirty different things rather than a paced out schedule of one or two games a week.
How do you collaborate with other baseball teams in the organization?
LK: There is a very open dialogue with a lot of sharing ideas to help all of the teams within the organization to succeed.
TI: It helps us to leverage costing and keep prices lower because of all the teams that we have.
What opportunities would you suggest for people wanting to get into the business?
LK: Volunteering and working with as many teams I could at school and then eventually working with the Mallards. I got my hands involved in as many different things as I could to see what I was interested in.
JK: Learning the skills necessary to be useful on the digital side. Including social media and photoshop. Having those skills make you useful and unique.
My name is Karli Schmitz and on behalf of the entire board, we hope you find this information valuable.