Jim McCarthy

CEO, Goldstar

Jim McCarthy is the CEO of Goldstar, but he is also Customer Service Agent No. 1 for the company. Jim has spent the last decade and a half in e-commerce, starting way back at GeoCities before it was bought by Yahoo in 1999. Even before that, he helped to open about 50 Noah’s Bagels locations in California, where he learned about delighting customers, developing employees and managing high growth. He’s written articles and commentary in Fast Company, Business Insider and other well known publications, and has appeared as a speaker at conferences like SXSW, TEDU (part of the main TED conference), INTIX and others. He co-founded TEDxBroadway, which he also hosts and curates. Jim graduated from Harvard College and has an MBA from the Anderson School at UCLA. He also speaks Japanese, writes ghost stories and is a certified lifeguard.


Designate a Day for Taking Pictures With Cast

The headline reads: Joe Manganiello calls out audience photographer during A Streetcar Named Desire. And remember, Joe can turn into a werewolf if he gets angry, so for all of our sakes, refrain from the urge to take pictures. The other side of this, of course, is that some people love your shows enough to want to take pictures of them. Here’s an idea to borrow from your brothers and sisters in baseball: Have a picture day! Major League...

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Who’s to Blame? AEG Wanted MJ Healthy, Happy

The basics of this are that MJ’s family sued AEG for hiring the doctor who was convicted of involuntary manslaughter in Michael’s death because the family considered AEG negligent for hiring a doctor they should have known was trouble. AEG had said that Jackson chose Murray, but the jury disagreed: They decided that AEG had in fact hired the doctor, but that AEG wasn’t negligent in doing so.If you recall, the tour that would have been sold faster than...

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Revenue Up, Attendance Down on Broadway

Broadway producer (and Selling Out friend) Ken Davenport analyzes the first 13 weeks of the Broadway 2013-14 season … and he’s not happy. Though revenue is up .3% (Don’t spend that all in one place!), attendance is down 8.7%, which is on a base of attendance, which dropped 6.2%. Ken says, “I’m not sounding the alarm bells just yet, but I definitely have my finger on my ‘I’ve Fallen and I Can’t Get Up’ button.” OK, Ken’s alarm system sounds...

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Louis C.K. & Kid Rock: Are they “generous” to their fans?

Both Louis C.K. and Kid Rock have gotten attention in the last year for charging much less than market value for tickets to their shows. In Kid Rock’s case, tickets are just $20 for this summer’s tour, and in both cases, shows sold out extremely quickly as a result of the pricing, and, I would add, the massive publicity about the pricing.So, are they being “generous” to their fans with these low prices, as some feel, or do they,...

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NFL Has a Problem With In-Stadium Experience

I’ve said this before and time has only made it clearer that I was right: The NFL has a problem with the in-stadium experience. The ingenuity shown by the Seahawks in using undercover security who will be dressed as opposing team fans is great. But it shouldn’t be necessary. Clean up the in-stadium experience, or game attendance will slowly trend down, as it has in the three years since I first warned about this.Take a look at the Los...

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Is Your Show Better Than a Meal at the Restaurant Next Door?

I wrote an article in 2010 about whether or not live entertainment is an industry. (The answer is “yes.”) Today, I’m asking how that industry is doing.For a long time, I’ve been saying that Live Entertainment is fundamentally healthy, and I still believe that. When I hear people bemoaning the business, I frequently ask them what business they’d rather be in. Aside from fad or hype-driven sectors, few places exist in the world of entertainment and media that are reliable,...

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Give Your Audience A Little Bit of the Spotlight

Sun Devil Stadium in Tempe is joining a number of other sports venues around the country in displaying social media content from people attending the game on Jumbotrons and other displays. While I'm not sure this is going to sell more tickets, I do think it helps avoid what I call "The Big You, and the Little Me," where the live entertainment business thinks of each patron as just an arm-waving face in the crowd, there to worship at...

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“Natasha” Drops Meals After Surveying Audiences

I saw this show when it included dinner and was in the Meatpacking District.  Now that it’s moving to Midtown and dropping dinner, it’s less of an immersive experience, but I still think you should go if you can. Here’s the part I thought was most interesting about the article:“Our audience surveys and phone surveys showed that people didn’t really value the meals, and at each ticket price level, people said they would’ve still bought tickets without the meals,”...

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