Having been working a good number of years to sell a show, most of these networks had no interest in the "reality" of the fire service. So, I thought it might be better to change our approach. What if instead of just taking a show to the network, what if we brought both viewers and corporate partners to back us up?
Keeping this in mind, I wrote a "letter to the editor" of Firehouse(R) magazine and discussed how the public's view of the fire service has evolved since the tragedy of 9/11. At that time, we were the "heroes" for all. All around the country, people finally began to appreciate the local department. As time passed, so did their appreciation. Then the economy almost bottomed out and now, municipalities, villages, counties, etc. had to cut their budgets and one of the first places they looked were either at the unions and their benefits or in volunteer departments, their equipment purchases. Suddenly, the fire service was an easy target. My letter called for the support, not money, from the industry.
The letter was published in a special, two-page layout. I was truly surprised and am very grateful to the magazine for doing so. Within just a couple of days of receiving my issue just under two weeks ago, I started to receive emails from numerous departments and over this weekend, I received our first corporate interest.
Now, just today, after conducting services for the High Holidays for a wonderful, small congregation in Wisconsin, where I spoke about the fire/service, a congregant came up to introduce herself and told me that her family company contributes to the industry, making hose couplings and custom lengths, as well as hose testing. Now that's what I call a stroke of luck. We exchanged business cards and plan on being in touch during the coming week.
I'll take it a sign of progress and hope you will too. If you are a member of the fire/rescue service, please visit our web site, www.dalmatianproductions.tv and drop us a line.
Thanks for dropping by!