Meet the Media – Jude Heller

Jude Heller has been the marketing manager for KPIX and KBCW TV in San Francisco since 2014 and is a legend in Bay Area broadcast circles. Jude spent 16 years in a similar role at the iconic SF radio station KFOG. For her amazingly creative work, Jude will be inducted into the Bay Area Radio Hall of Fame this Saturday, October 13.

Describe what a broadcast promotions and marketing manager does.

My role in broadcast is thinking strategically for our clients, whether it’s advice on a client campaign or how to extend that campaign so it really connects to our community.   I also have the opportunity to partner CBS TV with signature events in the Bay Area!  The photo above is from this year’s San Francisco Pride Parade with Chris Flynn, my boss and Director of Sales for KPIX and KBCW.  We are the official TV partners, which is something Chris and I put together!

How has that marketing role changed in the course of your career?

Luckily, most of my career has either been in broadcast media or working with broadcast media, and broadcast changes constantly.  That put me at the leading edge of changes in technology.  I’m so fortunate to be working in television right now – everything in marketing is screens, and we’re the content provider no matter how that video we create is viewed.

Tell us about your dream assignment and/or what’s your favorite thing about what you do?

I love coming up with new concepts for clients that haven’t been done before.  Sometimes the logical answer comes from just looking at a problem from a different angle.  It’s that challenge that keeps me interested and my work exciting each day.

Describe the wackiest thing you’ve ever had to do for a station or client.

When I was at KFOG Radio (World Class Rock), we came up with a unique contest – KFOG World Class Adventures, where I had to create some very different trips for two for Fogheads to win – there were at least a dozen of them.  At that time, trip contests were typically to a destination city.  Some of the World Class Adventures were “7 Days, No Nights” (a trip to Sweden during the solstice), “A Trip to Hell” (they didn’t go straight to Hell in the Grand Cayman Islands, they had to stop in Purgatory, Colorado first). The travel company who helped me put together these trips is still using many of the once-in-a-lifetime trips I created.

What is your professional pet peeve?

Here’s one we can all relate to – not getting a quick response from a phone call or email request.  We’re all on deadline and we’re all doing multiple jobs.  I don’t love hearing “no”, but I’d rather get that answer quickly and move on.

In this changing media marketplace, what advice do you have for PR pros who want to create broadcast partnerships for their clients, especially non-profit clients who may not have the means for a pay-to-play deal?

There are so many more media options out there right now for marketers then when I started in marketing – so many more ways to get the message across!  I think the media mix is very exciting!  Marketers and clients should reevaluate what a successful campaign means.  I’m also encouraged by the significant numbers reported that young consumers patronize companies and businesses who support cause marketing and diversity. It’s a focus that can really benefit non-profits. 

Tell us a little about yourself.  (hobbies, pets, favorite eateries/music/travel spots, etc.)

It’s thrilling to see live performances – music, theater, dance – I love it.  It always surprises me.  I just saw Yo Yo Ma perform at the Greek Theater in Berkeley – 2 ½ hours of solo cello – the complete Bach Suites.  What a rock star he is!  I was an art major in college, a skill I use every day.  My goals for 2019 are to travel more, read more.

We are working with Jude and her colleagues at KPIX 5 as media partner of our client Save the Redwoods League’s Free Second Saturdays centennial initiative, which also takes place this Saturday, October 13.

Questions or comments for Jude? Respond below.

7 thoughts on “Meet the Media – Jude Heller

  1. Congratulations on your admission into the Bay Area Radio Hall of Fame, Jude. And I totally agree that the broadcast landscape is continually changing, with new opportunities continuing to present themselves.

    Thanks for blogging!

  2. Jude, I am personally so honored to see your blog here today. We both certainly go back a very long time in broadcast and PR circles here in the Bay Area, don’t we? I like you am making travel a bigger and bigger priority, so our next stop is Greece – and we leave Thursday! Thanks again for contributing to our blog and for all of KPIX-TV’s support to the community. Cheers, David Landis

    1. So happy to be working with LCI and Polly with Save the Redwoods League’s Centennial year. Safe travels, David!

  3. Thanks for sharing this valuable insight, Jude! I’ve enjoyed working with you and appreciate your professionalism and responsiveness.

    David C.

    1. Hi Ashley. Thank you for saying that! It was a rare opportunity in radio, a window where everything was changing and good ideas were encouraged. I was just talking to a colleague at Hardly Strictly Bluegrass about it on Saturday; it was a lucky time to be working in radio and records. I’m hoping it will cycle back to that. Jude

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