Updated by Renzie Baluyut on October 2008.
Understand I’m The Renzie Man…
Exactly how many Renzie Baluyuts do you know anyway?
My name is Renan Salvador Viloria Baluyut. My friends and colleagues call me ‘Renzie‘. Or ‘The Renzie Man‘. Or ‘The Renzie Dude’. Or just plain ‘Dude’, ‘Man’, ‘Pare’ or ‘Chong’– which is most cases, really.
I’m in my mid-30’s, which means I should have resolved most of my life issues by now. I’ve lived in Metro Manila, Philippines for the entire 34 years of my life, though I’m right in the middle of making a move to Los Angeles, California hopefully by the end of the year.
I studied in Lourdes School of Quezon City for my elementary education, then at Quezon City Science High School after that. Even if I took up Physical Therapy (never took the boards, never practiced) at the University of the Philippines Manila, my career has always been along the lines broadcasting and marketing, so PT turned out to be a completely off-tangent course for me. In 1998, I went to UP Diliman to work on my masters, but I ended up producing more school events and concerts instead (it WAS a good time to do concerts back then!).
The Career of Renzie Baluyut So Far
Right now, I’m more of a writer-for-hire and work-at-home advocate. Which means I do all sorts of content development- technical writing, copy editing, blogging- for clients as well as for my own personal projects. I also do media and marketing consultancy work, dealing with SME’s more, which means helping small- and medium-sized enterprises realize and achieve their marketing communication goals.
But for the longest time, ever since I started earning a regular paycheck, I’ve always been in radio. I was affiliated with a total of three Metro Manila FM radio stations in my 14-year career as a radio executive:
- I started out at 99.5RT– an upscale contemporary hit music station (read: pop, with some alternative, AC and AAA)- back in 1994. I was a lowly DJ/radio announcer, but it was the coolest thing for me back then. Spent about two years in RT.
- Spent a little more than 10 years with Mellow Touch 94.7– which we repositioned later as Mellow 94.7– which was more soft adult contemporary (read: love songs, soft rock and ballads) than anything else. Initially did DJ work too, but this was where I learned to do other radio stuff: digital audio production, broadcast copy writing, music segment production, events management, integrated marketing communication, client relations, guerilla marketing and brand management. My last few years with Mellow saw me as Sales and IMC Manager. Fun, but really hectic stuff.
- My last radio stint was as Program Director for 105.1 Crossover, a smooth jazz and easy-listening radio station. Which means I handle day-to-day operations of said radio station, which includes pretty much anything and everything that goes on the air. I left the station in April earlier this year.
So what’s next for me? I’m not closing my doors on radio. In fact, I’m toying around with a few podcasts now, but I’m not actively looking for real 9-to-5 employment any time soon. Sure, why not- if an offer comes my way that’s pretty much what I want to do and worth my while, but I’m actually enjoying the freedom and flexibility I have right now.
Ultimately, I see myself doing a lot of investing after a few more years. In the meantime, I’d like to focus on a couple of small business ventures, and build it from the ground up. I feel that I’m more than ready, with lots to offer, and I already have a few good ideas and market segments in mind.
Other Renzie Side Projects So Far
Just like any well-meaning dude living on his own, I’ve also managed to make some extra cash on the side doing other things. Looking back, I feel like I actually made pretty good use of my time. Though I think I may have done better saving up my cash and managing it better. Here are some of the other things I’ve done in the past.
- One of my first summer jobs was doing tutorial work: I’d teach English, Science and Math for kids, or take on elementary-level tutees. Paid for my Debbie Gibson and Rick Astley tapes back in ’88.
- I did lots of voice-over gigs in the late 90’s- mostly radio commercials, but some AVP’s and voicing over somebody else’s face on a TV commercial. By the early 2000’s, I was doing more of this for the radio station rather than for the Makati-based production houses.
- Speaking of production houses, I was at AdFarm for a couple of years. Did voice-casting for various audio projects and maintained the audio library back then. That stint at AdFarm also made me interested in digital audio production, which I pursued more later on at Mellow 94.7.
- Hosting gigs for all kinds of parties and bar tours, and even corporate shows for all kinds of clients. You get over the initial stage fright pretty quickly. Took on lots of these jobs in the mid- to late 90’s. And there was almost always something going on every weekend.
- Also did a lot of hosting gigs for weddings and wedding receptions. Armed with a bunch of barongs and a handy wedding reception script, I spent an entire summer hosting all kinds of weddings. This was mostly in ’97 to ’98.
- By the late ’90s, I was more into event management. Over the course of seven years, I’d have done all kinds- from workshops and seminars, to gaming tournaments, to concerts of all types and sizes, to bar tours, corporate shows, below-the-line promotional activities, trade shows, job fairs, movie premieres, mall shows, local store marketing efforts, and even massive office Christmas parties. Lots of fun, but I don’t think I can do much of this anymore at this age😀
- In the early 2000’s I got into the contact center business- mostly operations management. I started out as a lowly phone-monkey like everyone else, but eventually worked my way up in a short span of time. The largest team I ever handled was a total of about 240 people working 2 shifts. It was a blessing for most radio dudes, since we all had a contact center stint at the time. I eventually left E-Performax in 2003 to go full-time with Mellow 94.7 as head of the sales department.
- As you can already tell, I’ve decided to explore the wonderful world of blogging and new media. I started in March of 2007, but it wasn’t until October of 2007 that I’ve decided to take it more seriously.
- In late 2007, right in between radio stints, I did a lot of content development for an Australian-based multinational, peddling all kinds of stuff online from pet supplies to industrial foam and clothing and apparel. This was where I realized my passion for writing, and where I picked up my desire to learn more new media and search engine marketing.
- Just before I left for the United States the first time, some friends and I put together some workshops specifically aimed at bloggers- blogging workshops focusing on topics such as blog monetization and managing traffic and all that. Maybe I should do more of that while I’m here in town.
What I Want To Do Next
I love meeting new people- mainly for the purpose of networking and business. I love tossing great ideas around, watching them mutate into something no one’s ever imagined. Most importantly, I love keeping my life stress-free and easy-going.
If anything, the contrast of my new lifestyle against the hectic life of a media executive has taught me much. In the end, you really have to ask yourself: what exactly do you want to do for the rest of your life?
I’ve stepped up my efforts to keep on working out, for a change. I got me a cool camera and now I’m trying to learn as much as I can about digital photography. I’m very much still into blogging, but I want to take it up a notch- get my hands dirty some more with new media, podcasts and viral videos. Then there’s more web development I can get myself into- with today’s resources available online, it’s never been this much easier.
When I get back to Los Angeles, part of the whole plan is to get a place of my own- and then get into lots of cooking and baking. With that, take lots of pictures, and put it up on my food blog.
I want to get into the business of travel and group tours. I want to learn more about real estate as a viable means of investing. I’d like to go diving. I’d like to put up a couple of online stores.
Let’s see what happens over the next several months.
I got me a sister who’s doing well in Los Angeles and a brother who just got married. Dad passed away from cancer earlier this year, and I thought it would be great to keep Mom some company, since I actually have more time to do traveling now, and lots more free time on my hands.
I had the pleasure of reconnecting with family- both on my Mom’s side and my Dad’s- just this year. Something I’ve never quite been able to do while I was neck-deep in work.
My immediate uncles, aunts and cousins from the Baluyut side of the family have, for the most part, always been based here in Metro Manila. In the course of my job, I’ve somehow managed to discover other Baluyuts out there, and thanks to Facebook, actually reconnected with some cousins I’ve never met before (we’re all trying to sort out the familial ties, but no one has an actual family tree for reference).
Last July, Mom and I managed to visit family in Butuan City. It was a great experience for us both; Mom hasn’t been back in the Philippines in sixteen years, and it was really my first time in Mindanao. For me, it was just a good feeling to latch on to a the concept of family for a change, having had living so independently for the past 15 or 16 years, mostly without much in the way of family contact. It was cool just catching up, talking about family stuff they wouldn’t normally discuss with me when I was a kid, getting to know cousins I’ve only met for the first time, and basically just getting involved in family affairs.
As for the Viloria side of the family- I’m just happy to have been able to hang out with my cousins even for just a few days– some of whom I haven’t even seen in years. Thanks to my more flexible lifestyle, it would seem that I would be doing a lot more traveling, and I’ll definitely come visit them in Toronto, Boston, Vancouver, or the UK. Should be lots of fun.
Renzie’s Massive Blog Efforts.
At the time this blog was created, it had only recently occurred to me that, while I have been working for some fine companies for the past 14 years, I really have nothing to show for it.
Thankfully, in the summer of 2007, I got the chance to seriously re-evaluate my life- at least figure out exactly what I wanted for myself and how am I supposed to go about getting what I want. Bottom line: I want my own businesses. I want my own companies. But in order for me to do that, I have to develop and fine-tune my areas of expertise.
At this point, I have lots to offer: I do a lot of marketing- under which falls events management, brand management, internet marketing, etc. I’m a more-than-decent writer and editor. I know a lot about radio broadcasting, media and advertising. I’d like to think I’m a decent host and voice talent. So all that can be channeled into successful business ideas. Finally in May 2007- I started to work on it.
As I am immersed in traditional media, I’m also a strong advocate of New Media- I blog a lot, and I have quite a number of blogs at the moment, and I help beginner bloggers find their way. Along those lines, I’m learning as much as I can about Internet Marketing (including Search Engine Optimization/Marketing and Social Media Optimization), E-Commerce and Online Trading.
I say it’s a “massive blog effort” only because I feel like I have bitten off more than I could actually chew. The appeal of blogging to me is that I finally have a channel to say what I want, communicate exactly what I feel without the constraints of having to think about the institutions I represent.
True freedom of expression right here. This blog is actually one of the first efforts I’ve made. It wasn’t until November of 2007, however, that I have decided to make my blog efforts geared towards monetization. Since then, I have already set up variety of blog projects, mainly as a way to showcase the things I feel passionate about, and to learn about blog-building, SEO and html/css as I go along.
Currently active blogs include:
- This one, “The Life & Times of The Renzie Man”. You’re reading it now.
- One on blogs and blog-building, “Blog. Blogger. Bloggest!” Geared towards beginning bloggers and those only starting to get into New Media.
- Another one on reviews: Dining Out, Travel, Spas, Hotels, Tech, Pop Culture. “Renzie’s Rants and Raves!” tends to be more opinionated than most of my other blogs.
- “My Thoughts In Stereo” is all about music, including the FM radio industry, factoids on songs and artists, media research, and the occasional lost music video.
Other blogs in the works include the following:
- A blog on gaming
- A blog on my favorite TV shows
- A blog on business- management, marketing, communication, e-commerce
- A blog on food
- A blog on movies
- A blog on entrepreneurship- making money online, etc
- A blog on writing and SEO
- A blog on English usage
Unless something else tickles my fancy, I would have to say that these will have to be it for now.
So yeah. Wow, that’s a whole lot of stuff to keep track of, huh? I suppose maintaining them is gonna be a bitch. At least until I figure something out.