SBJ/June 12 - 18, 2006/Careerspeople

'Our world is about to change a little bit' after study, Belmont says

Dan Belmont has joined The Marketing Arm and Millsport after seven years at Carat Specialist Communications Group. While at Carat, Belmont exposed the media agency to new ideas such as sponsorship, events and experiential marketing and helped its parent company acquire Velocity Sports and Entertainment. He spoke to staff writer Brandon McClung.

Age: 43
New title: Chief marketing officer, The Marketing Arm, and president, Millsport
Previous job title: President, Carat Specialist Communications Group
First job: Friendly’s restaurant
College education: Bachelor of science, computer science, St. John’s University (1985)
Resides: Dover, Mass., with wife Yvette and children Kristin, Scott and Oscar
Grew up: Queens and Long Island, N.Y.
Brand most admired: Apple
Favorite vacation spot: Anywhere with great fishing
Last book read: “Siddhartha,” by Hermann Hesse
Favorite musicians: Drummer Bill Bruford and Simon Phillips (Belmont is a drummer and studied with noted teacher Norman Grossman)

What’s the biggest risk you’ve taken in your career?

Trying to bring sponsorship, events and experiential marketing inside the media agency world. It was something that hadn’t been done before. It made sense but would people really want it? It was a risk that paid off.

What is your biggest professional accomplishment?

First, it is a privilege being here in a leadership position at such a respected company, and to be a part of Omnicom is pretty cool. Second, I am the chairman for the Advertising Research Foundation Experiential Marketing Council, and we’re about to field a study that will change the way we plan, buy and measure live interaction with brands. It’s taken three years to get here and I think our world is about to change a little bit as a result of our effort.

What is your biggest professional disappointment?

Trying and failing is part of the job. You learn and you move on. However, the things that have hurt the most have probably been those few bad hires that haven’t delivered. After all, we are in the business of selling the collective effort of a large group of people, and there is a lot riding on everyone playing their part.

What is one story you are continuing to watch in sports today?

I work often in Dallas now and they have turned me into a Mavericks fan. They have had a great run, and I have really enjoyed watching them.

So what do you think of Mark Cuban’s ownership style?

You have to love it. You need characters in sports, and as an owner he is not afraid to get out there and play a role with his team.

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