Beverly Mahone – Boomer Media Training Professional

I’ve known Beverly at least 6 years now. We met on Ryze when it meant something, although I’m not sure how well she remembered me. But I did recognize her immediately on Twitter years later and we connected. I’ve been on her Blog Talk Radio show many times, and was on her regular radio show once. Now she’s got a TV show as well. Who is she and how does she do what she does? Read below:

1. How did you first get into TV news, and was it your first stop in media?

My very first television job was in 1987 — when I was hired by one of the NBC Affiliates in North Carolina. I always wanted to do television but was convinced I didn’t have the right “look.” By that, I mean my skin color. During that time, any black anchors or reporters on TV looked like Jayne Kennedy so I figured that ruled me out. I didn’t have long hair nor was I tall. But I decided to take a chance anyway since I was in North Carolina and saw women who actually looked like me. I owe everything to my start in TV to my former News Director, Jim Bennett, who was willing to take a chance on me with no previous television news experience. I didn’t disappoint him I’m happy to say and I got promoted a few times while there.

My media career actually started in radio right out of college. I went to work for a radio station in Beckley, West Virginia and soon realized they hadn’t gotten the memo about affirmative action. When I started questioning the arrest of a black man on charges of murder when he had a stone cold alibi, the Sheriff kindly told me “my kind didn’t belong there and shouldn’t be sticking my nose in business where it didn’t belong.” When I told my boss what happened, I ended up being the one who got fired because he said I was disrespectful to a law enforcement official. I took my case to the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) for discrimination and WON! I got a severance package out of the deal, which helped me while searching for another job.

2. What’s it like doing a daily news program? Is it as glamorous as many people think it is, and does it pay well in local markets?

There’s so much that people don’t see when it comes to gathering the news. All they see is the end result where we come into your living room. They don’t see the daily grind of how to find news on a slow news day or how to track down credible sources for a big story. They don’t see the many phone calls made and people we have to talk to before we can put the story together. They don’t see the editing or the newsroom battles we have over why we choose to do one story over another. It can get pretty intense at times. The glamorous side is being recognized on the street by someone who treats you like a celebrity.

3. When you left TV, what made you decide to go into public relations?

I don’t really call what I do “public relations.” I am a Media Trainer and what I do is teach people how to self-promote to give themselves more visibility so they will be recognized by different media outlets. I know how challenging it can be to get exposure because I was once on the “other side” combing through press releases and listening to media pitches and I know what it takes to break through and catch a reporter or producer’s eye. I LOVE doing it and I’m good at it!

4. What drove you back to media, first with Blog Talk Radio, then your radio program and finally your new TV show?

I love being a “voice” with a message. I enjoy interviewing interesting people and sharing their stories with the world.

5. I listened to your interview with Jane Velez-Mitchell; how do you get big time guests to show up for your programs?

People are always looking for exposure. It doesn’t matter how big of a celebrity they are. If they are trying to promote a book or movie or whatever, they want the opportunity. I truly live by the scripture that says you receive not because you ask not. If they turn me down, I can always find someone else. I might also add being a part of the Radio and TV groups on LinkedIn helps because we’re always trading information and being a Radio Host at a traditional radio station also helps. It also helps to have gone to school with a few celebrities like Nancy Cartwright (voice of Bart Simpson). She’s been my guest a few times and we’ve stayed in touch since college.

6. You once got someone onto Oprah; how’d that happen?

Answer: It wasn’t Oprah — I WISH! It was the Today Show. I went to college with Matt Lauer and that’s all I’m saying 🙂

7. In January I reviewed your book Don’t Ask; tell people why you wrote it, how sales have been, and how it developed into a game and how that’s been going for you.

I wrote the book because of a lie I told my doctor that nearly cost me my life. I haven’t actively promoted it as much as I did the first two but sales for the card game have been tremendous!

The card game came about one evening when a few girlfriends and I were sitting around talking about the book. Each one shared their own story about what they would have done in some of my situations. From there I got the idea to create a card game. It is definitely a deck of dialogue. Rarely do people get through the entire deck because they’re so busy discussing their responses or recalling their own “Don’t Ask” stories. The game has far exceeded my expectations. I think the card game sells the book.

8. You gear a lot of your stuff towards baby boomers, which includes me. How do you see us overall taking to social media, what are we missing, and how can we be better?

I think the majority of us are doing a pretty good job in social media because we clearly understand who we’re talking to—each other. Our messages are clear and concise and we are easy to find, especially on Twitter.

For me personally, I still struggle with the technical side of it all and I think that may be a problem for other boomers. Instead of dealing with it, some just refuse to stay up-to-date. In social media, it’s hard NOT to because it’s changing all the time. That’s why it’s important to surround yourself with others who know and understand more than you about different aspects of social media — even if they’re younger. Luckily I have you, Mitch along with Heidi Caswell to help me. 🙂

9. Tell people other stuff about you that I might not have covered here.

I’m married — just celebrating our five-year anniversary in June. He is my soulmate and I am so blessed to have been given a second chance at love after living 18 years in a nightmare. I have a five-year-old grandson and a daughter, who’s a rising senior in college. Want to know how I felt about having a teenage daughter get pregnant? Read about it in my book!

10. If you get Mariah Carey to appear on any of your shows, can I be there with you? 🙂

I’ll be sure to call you well in advance!

You can find Beverly at Real Talk With Beverly Mahone and Baby Boomer Talk. And if you want to check out shows I’ve been on with Bev here you go; some of these are MP3 files:

Passions Show 4/18/10

Passions Show 1/10/10

Men Have Issues Too

Reinventing Yourself

Passions Show 7/26/09

Passions Show 6/7/09

24 thoughts on “Beverly Mahone – Boomer Media Training Professional”

  1. Another excellent interview Mitch, quite interesting and a lot of think can be learned from it. This is impressive, covering all types of media.

      1. I must admit, that I am re-reading it now, as I mentioned in my email yesterday, I felt a bit tired, I even don’t remember commenting, wow. One think is for sure, she is one of the kind as you’ve said.

  2. Mitch and Beverly, thanks for sharing this interesting conversation! As Mitch knows, anyone who has published a game has my attention. That rocks! I would have thought that the book would drive the game sales – evidently, the game must be tons of fun (I’m certainly not going to put my foot in mouth by saying it must be better than the book. LOL)

    I’m glad I know more about you, Beverly.



      1. Yeah, man! I just hope I’m half as interesting as Beverly.



        P.S. {waves to Heidi}

  3. Mitch,
    Thanks for the EXPOSURE! This is part of what I teach. Exposure is exposure and it comes from all types of sources. Social media sites have opened many doors for people to promote who they are and what they do.

    Thanks Mitchell and Carl for taking the time to stop by and read the interview.

  4. I’ve known Bev for quite some time now … & your great interview gave me brand new insight! Very well done & enjoyable. Bev is certainly a powerhouse & full of great knowledge.

  5. Beverly is the media go to person. She has the experience and the contacts. Both are important. It’ll be fun to see where your TV show goes.
    Beverly, the technical side may not be your area of expertise, but once you learn, you use these tools as well as any pro 🙂
    I heard the same thing from a non-boomer, that we have roadblocks dealing with all this new social media. And I look at all my baby boomer friends who are using it and went what roadblock? One that can be overcome he said. Beverly, you are living proof that anyone who has the drive and ambitions can overcome that road block.
    Waving to all my friends, many contacts where made back in the days of Ryze.

  6. Hi Mitch. It’s another nice interview. Say, why don’t you do more interview? It’s always nice to read them you know. Thanks a lot, dude, for sharing this.

  7. Great interview, Mitch. Beverly Mahone is one of the most amazing women I have ever been privileged to meet. She is an Icon of Motivation, Encouragement and Empowerment and is passionate about helping others shine! This precious soul, my dear friend, is on the move and making a difference, not only in her life, but in the lives of countless others. How she does what she does with such excellence is due to the GRACE that operates mightily in her!

  8. Thank you Linda, Heidi and Ora for your comments! (Your check is in the mail) Seriously, you ladies are part of the reason why I am successful because I am surrounded by your brilliance. My motto is: “Surround yourself with brilliance and then rise to the occasion.” Being a part of Boomer Diva Nation has made us all rise to the occasion.

  9. Hi Mitch, Beverly is another fine example of a person who worked hard from the bottom up. We need more of her type to come to the front and provide guidance for some of our misguided youth. Her desire to openly help others gain visibility is testimony to her giving spirit. She knows the difficulties that are always in the forefront of our efforts and the need to have that bit of luck or maybe that little exposure. There is no doubt that she is talented given the number and the big names of individuals she interviews and I like her demeanor.
    However Mitch I am not so sure about you being a Baby Boomer, not if I understand the term as used in my culture, but that’s open for discussion. You did ask some very interesting questions but I think the question “how can we be better?” for me, this was the one that hit the mark. The interview “Passions Show 4/18/10 provides a number of suggestions showing how one can use social media, networking and the like to promote sites. I would recommend that anyone any day and to anyone who want to look for new ways to improve they position in the social media. Excellent post Mitch, and a wonderful and educational interview Beverly.

    1. William, anyone born between 1948 and 1964 is considered a baby boomer, and that’s me to a tee. So yeah, I am definitely a baby boomer. lol And you even listened to one of my interviews; I’m touched. 🙂

  10. Hi Mitch, I enjoyed the interview with Bev and I learned even more about her than I did back when I interviewed her earlier this year. What an amazing story about her FCC win back in WV. Cheers!!

  11. Interesting interview with Beverly, Mitch. But then she’s an interesting person – like you. 🙂 (Hi Beverly!)

    I listened to parts of a couple of the broadcasts you linked to. Will try and listen to some more another time.

  12. Wow! This was five years ago. I was just reading the comments by William and it’s like HE KNEW my direction. I’m just following my heart and passion.

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