SBD/July 3, 2013/People and Pop Culture

Minding My Business With SI.com & Golf.com VP & GM Jim DeLorenzo

JIM DELORENZO since taking over the role of SI.com & Golf.com VP & GM in May '12 has launched a new mobile website for both publications as well as several new channels on the SI side, including Swim Daily, devoted to the magazine's swimsuit franchise. DeLorenzo, a New Jersey native who lives in Montclair, recently spoke with THE DAILY about digital sports media's future, finding employees who can handle a crisis and playing drums in PETE YORN's high school band.

Key online metrics...
I don’t think there’s one sort of golden metric that you can look at and say, "This is what we’re going to use to drive our success." We look at a suite of metrics, it’s a combination of comScore, Omniture, some other internal tracking systems.

The future of sports media on the Internet...
Users continue to change the way they’re consuming sports content online. Platforms and products continue to change. It’s just going to be more a question of who has the right vision and is able to anticipate the way consumers going forward are going to consume content and what’s the best product for getting that content to them -- that’s the company that’s really going to start to make waves.

Looking for in a job candidate...
You can interview somebody and have a pretty good sense that, during the day-to-day operations, they’re going to be fine. But it’s really hard to see into that person’s makeup and their mindset to know if the going gets tough, is this person going to push through on their own accord. I spend a lot of time when I’m interviewing people really trying to focus on clues and things that I think may help me get some insight. But really until you have that first incident, the first fire drill, that’s really when you see what the person’s made of and if they’re going to push through.

What makes negotiations go awry...
I say this as an attorney -- but I think that when attorneys get involved too early in the process, it can cause things to go sideways. Because you can get lost in the weeds on technical legal terms when you don’t actually have agreement on what the business terms are going to be. It really should be the business terms setting the foundation and the framework, and you’re moving on to the legal position.

The industry needs more of...
Innovation. I try to seek out startups that are focused on sports media, and you see a lot of the same model being regurgitated. It's a really hard landscape to navigate as a startup, because a lot of people not of the world don’t understand the rights issues that are involved.

Favorite media...
I am a big fan of Pulse, the newsreader app. I like the new Digg, I like what those guys are doing, in just curating some of the different stories. I like Techmeme just because I think it provides a nice clean interface and allows me to consume content really quickly.

Guilty pleasures...
I’m a huge fan of (HBO's) "Game of Thrones." I have not (read the books). That’s one of the debates with some of the guys I work with, whether it’s better to have read the books or not. There’s arguments on both sides. I actually love (NBC's) "The Voice," it’s something I watch with my wife. I am definitely more of an USHER/SHAKIRA guy.

Music I like and the road not taken...
FUN., I know it’s so not cutting edge but I like it. THE LUMINEERS is another one. And I grew up with Pete Yorn. I was actually the drummer in his first band, so I try to keep up with him. When I got out of college and went to law school, then moved down to DC as a young attorney, Pete came through touring, and played at the 9:30 Club down there. A really nice music venue down in DC, and that’s when I decided that I definitely made the wrong choice.
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