Advertising Sound Business Asbjoern Andersen


Andy Greenberg is a 30+ year veteran in the television and film industry. His career has taken him from the East Coast to Southern California, and finally to Northern California, where he has worked in sound for the advertising industry for the last several years at One Union Recording in San Francisco. And in this interview by Doug Siebum, he discusses his approach to building client relationships in the advertising industry:
Written by Doug Siebum, photos courtesy of Siena Greenberg and Andy Greenberg
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DS: Hi Andy, thanks for agreeing to do an interview. Today I’d like to talk about the topic of clientele and building client relationships. Can you introduce yourself? How did you get your start in sound? How did you find your way into the advertising industry?

AG: I have been a musician for most of my life. I started recording bands in High School. Then went on to get a bachelor of science degree in sound, acoustics and system engineering. Music wasn’t paying the bills, so I moved into location sound recording for films and video. Then started working in a production facility. I was doing everything from field recording to editing and even graphics. When I moved to Los Angeles, I started the process again with location engineering, then found a large post facility that let me help build some edit suites and a few mix rooms. When the early versions of Protools came out, I was hooked. I started to mix long form videos and documentaries as well as some commercial spots. I really enjoyed the commercial spots because quality was a main focus. Long form is mostly about making bad production sound better. Commercial production allows me to capture the best quality audio and start from there. When I moved to San Francisco I started to work for One Union Recording where we do many different kinds of projects, but mostly commercial post work.
 

DS: How did you find your first clients?

AG: For most of my career, I was working in a facility that clients would come to. So, my clients would come to finish their work and I would be assigned to record or mix the job. The same thing happened when I moved to San Francisco. I was assigned clients in the beginning, then after I started working with the same folks, we developed a relationship and they would keep coming back.
 

Building a client relationship takes time and patience. The only thing you can do is always be professional and try to guide the session with a soft touch.

DS: Can you talk about building relationships with clients?

AG: Building a client relationship takes time and patience. The only thing you can do is always be professional and try to guide the session with a soft touch. Some clients know what they want from the beginning, others need to find their way as you work. I like to say “it’s all about the journey”. You have to learn to read the room and figure out the dynamics of who is driving the boat at the beginning of the session. If you can do that, you will have a great mix.
 

Communication is key. I need to ask questions, the client needs to ask questions, there has to be an open dialog at all times. Even after the session is over.

DS: How do you maintain those relationships once you have clients? Any tips?

AG: Communication is key. I need to ask questions, the client needs to ask questions, there has to be an open dialog at all times. Even after the session is over. If there is a mix change or re-edit, we have to be as flexible as possible to facilitate that change. If I can’t get to it right away, the client needs to know that. We do our best to make those kinds of experiences go as smoothly as possible.
 

DS: Who was your first really big client? How did you meet that client?

AG: I think my first really big client was the director Paul Hunter. Though I really didn’t know how big he was at the time. I had mixed the Biggie Smalls video Hypnotize, and a Mariah Carey video, and a Bobby Brown video. He liked working with me and we had done about 6 videos together before I moved up to San Francisco. He had come into the production facility in Los Angeles to do some editing and color correction and found out we had a sound department as well. We got along very well.
 

DS: Does the client already have a budget in mind? Or does One Union have a minimum rate card?

AG: The best part about my job is I don’t have to worry too much about the client’s budget. I am sure the client has a certain budget amount in mind. They will purchase the time they think it will take to complete the task at hand. One Union has a minimum amount of time we like to book, which is an hour. There are specific rates for the type of work we do. Radio, TV / Video, Surround and ATMOS all have set rates per hour.
 

DS: Do you have a marketing team to help you find new clients?

AG: We do not have a marketing team. We rely mostly on word of mouth and Google. Over the years we have worked with all the major Advertising Agencies as well as large productions studios. They know us and know we are always up to the task. Recently we have been added to the Dolby network, due to our addition of two Dolby ATMOS suites. This is starting to bring some clients into the facility.
 

We take sound pretty seriously here

DS: How does union vs. non-union affect which projects you can take on?

AG: As far as commercial work, it has no effect on our ability to do the work or not. When it comes to theatrical work, we can do the work, but in some cases, we just won’t get an official credit.
 

DS: How many of your clients go back to college or before? How far back do these relationships go?

AG: I went to school on the east coast, so none of the folks I worked with there, work out here.
I have been at One Union for almost 23 years now. I have some clients that have been with me from my start here.
 

 

Popular on A Sound Effect right now - article continues below:

 

Latest releases:  
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    Perfect for games, cartoons, movies, and other projects involving retro game themes, you can use these 8-bit sound effects as they are, or explore vast new sound possibilities by playing around with them, combining, looping, and layering them. If you need a fresh and versatile collection of retro-sounding 8-bit sound effects for your production that will instantly throw your audience back to the 80’s era and the time of classic arcade games and consoles, 8-Bit Retro sound library is a must-have!

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    All sounds are organized into 8 categories:

    • Organic Deepness
    • Subtle Impacts
    • Ethereal Whooshes Swells and Risers
    • Droplets and Splashes
    • Atmospheres and Drones
    • Shine and Bright
    • Tonal

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    Synthetic Drones was achieved by running a multitude of analog synthesizers through complex effects chains, resulting in resonant, cold, mechanical ambiences where its source remains abstract and mysterious.

    Each audio file contains several variations of the same synthesizer and effects chain, ranging from simple resonant notes, abstract rhythmic clanging and organic soundscapes, rounded up with a futuristic approach, perfect for gloomy science-fiction projects. The takes are long and evolving, giving you creative freedom to use them however deemed necessary.

    Add to cart
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    JUST WHOOSH 4 sends forth an armada of highly trained and bloodthirsty Whoosh Sweeteners, ready to take over and beef up any feeble Whooshes, spineless Pass-Bys and wimpy Transition sound effects in no time.
    So they finally do what they should: intensifying the sense of motion and velocity of anything that moves on screen.
    From short, fast pass-bys, through magical fireballs to massive, droning, portly passing spaceships – This Whoosh Sweetener Toolkit does the job.

    To strike with even more precision and efficiency, the fleet splits up into three squadrons:

    JUST WHOOSH 4
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DS: Are the ad agencies that you work with specific to San Francisco?

AG: No, we work with agencies from all over the country. It’s about the producers or creatives and the actors location that brings the opportunity to us.
 

DS: Besides advertising, do you take on other projects?

AG: Yes, we do quite a bit of ADR for film and TV. We also do sound for large events for many of the Bay area’s tech companies. Sound for toys, web, phone systems and even short films and documentaries.
 

Sound Design is serious

Serious about Sound Design: Halloween Edition

How does One Union Recording keep up client relationships?

I think just as important as gear and engineering talent, is the relationship we have with our clients. First, client comfort and amenities are a big priority at One Union. From fast internet, fruit trays, snacks, drinks and comfortable chairs even libations at the end of the day, all these bases are covered. But second and even more critical is a personal relationship with all our clients. It starts with a warm welcome and continues to talking about life and family, even pets. Some of our clients have been with us for over 10, 15 even 20 years and that is because we care about them and their family and friends. We have seen kids grow up and go to college, and producers meet their future spouses and then have children. I even have a client whose daughter became a producer and I worked with her as well. Having your clients know you and trust you and feel comfortable in your studio is a guaranteed path to success.

DS: I think that’s about it. Any final thoughts?

AG: As far as client relationships go, sometimes it’s not about the quality of the job you are able to do, but more about your availability or even the clients physical location. People move around a lot, I always hope to see them again, but I am constantly meeting and working with new people and starting over with building new relationships.
 

A big thank you to Andy Greenberg for sharing some insight and experience with us, into building client relationships.

Check out Andy Greenberg on IMDb and at One Union Recording.

 

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Latest sound effects libraries:
 
  • 8-Bit Retro sound library is a collection of retro-sounding beeps, bleeps, loops, and jingles, that all sound like they came straight out of those legendary arcade video games and the time when Nintendo, C64 and Atari ruled The Earth!

    Perfect for games, cartoons, movies, and other projects involving retro game themes, you can use these 8-bit sound effects as they are, or explore vast new sound possibilities by playing around with them, combining, looping, and layering them. If you need a fresh and versatile collection of retro-sounding 8-bit sound effects for your production that will instantly throw your audience back to the 80’s era and the time of classic arcade games and consoles, 8-Bit Retro sound library is a must-have!

    8-Bit Retro sound library contains 672 sound effects (116MB) in 16 Bit / 44.1 kHz Stereo WAV format, embedded with metadata to speed up your workflow, and separated into three categories: 1.Loops 2.Jingles 3.Various

  • Destruction & Impact Smooth Play Track 140 sounds included $39 $25

    SMOOTH is a collection of 140 24-bit/48khz wave sound effects.

    I’ts delicate, soft, deep, eerie, cinematic. Its sounds are crafted for slow motion shots, abstract film sequences, motion design shots and mysterious, not aggressive, evocative and ethereal projects.
    All sounds are organized into 8 categories:

    • Organic Deepness
    • Subtle Impacts
    • Ethereal Whooshes Swells and Risers
    • Droplets and Splashes
    • Atmospheres and Drones
    • Shine and Bright
    • Tonal

    They are total wet and 100% reverbered, designed with a “light touch”, definitely the opposite of big distorted and punchy sounds.

    36 %
    OFF
    Ends 1586728799
  • Drones & Moods Synthetic Drones Play Track 177 sounds included, 305 mins total $30

    Synthetic Drones is the beginning of a new, affordable series aimed at delivering high quality cinematic soundscapes, with variety and flexibility in mind to induce dread and discomfort onto your audiovisual ventures.

    Synthetic Drones was achieved by running a multitude of analog synthesizers through complex effects chains, resulting in resonant, cold, mechanical ambiences where its source remains abstract and mysterious.

    Each audio file contains several variations of the same synthesizer and effects chain, ranging from simple resonant notes, abstract rhythmic clanging and organic soundscapes, rounded up with a futuristic approach, perfect for gloomy science-fiction projects. The takes are long and evolving, giving you creative freedom to use them however deemed necessary.

  • Animals & Creatures Wolves Play Track 500+ sounds included, 78 mins total $55

    DESCRIPTION:

    This library provides the highest quality vocal sounds of the members of a wolves pack in their social interaction: Howls solo and in groups from 2 to 9, fierce growls, extremely bassy grumblings, barks, snorts, whines, yapping. All the raw material was collected using the method of passive week-long observation with minimal intrusion, nothing was staged or provoked. A large part of the library is made of unintentional recordings of the accidental territorial quarrel between a polar wolf SEVER and an alpha male HORT: very aggressive growls, teeth clacking and other fight sounds. Luckily, despite the terrifying sonic impression, no one was injured. About 60 hours of raw recordings were edited into 1 hour 18 minutes, 151 files with 500+ individual sounds. Wolves are very emotional, expressive and surprisingly musical. So, these sounds can be equally useful for films and games representing wolves, as well as for creature and monster sound design. Some of the recordings sound very humanlike.

    10% of this library revenue goes to the shelter for wolves.

  • Mechanical Just Whoosh 4 | Whoosh Sweeteners Play Track 532 - 1614 sounds included From: $55 From: $30.80

    JUST WHOOSH 4 sends forth an armada of highly trained and bloodthirsty Whoosh Sweeteners, ready to take over and beef up any feeble Whooshes, spineless Pass-Bys and wimpy Transition sound effects in no time.
    So they finally do what they should: intensifying the sense of motion and velocity of anything that moves on screen.
    From short, fast pass-bys, through magical fireballs to massive, droning, portly passing spaceships – This Whoosh Sweetener Toolkit does the job.

    To strike with even more precision and efficiency, the fleet splits up into three squadrons:

    JUST WHOOSH 4
    1st STRIKE

    Categories:
    Noise & Interference
    Rattle & Mechanics
    Spacecrafts & SciFi
    537  Sounds | 1,84 GB
    JUST WHOOSH 4
    2nd STRIKE

    Categories:
    Abstract & Fantasy
    Engines & Motors
    Projectiles & Ballistics
    545 Sounds | 1,82 GB
     
    JUST WHOOSH 4
    3rd STRIKE

    Categories:
    Friction & Organic
    Metallic & Dystopian
    Synthetic & Artificial
    Water & Bubbles
    532 Sounds | 1,58 GB

     

    44 %
    OFF
    Ends 1587419999
 
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