Digital Fundraising School

I’m thrilled to announce the start of Digital Fundraising School.  The first session is FREE

  • learn more about how crowdfunding can change your life
  • launch your product prototype fully funded
  • raise the money you need to put your film into production
  • create your album or music tracks
  • advance a social cause or charity with crowdfunding

Receive a free class taught by an expert with a proven track record in media, branding, and crowdfunding.  If you’ve never considered crowdfunding, now is the time to learn more. If you have a crowdfunding campaign you’d like to launch, Digital Fundraising School will help you do it. Sign up for the first session.  It’s free.

Sign Up For Digital Fundraising School

Digital Fundraising School will be in session in September. The first, free 60-minute session will be taught by Lee Schneider, creative director of Red Cup Agency and founder of DocuCinema, and will include special guests who well tell the stories and secrets of their crowdfunding successes.


500 Words by Lee Schneider

Dads Get Respect

500 Words – Written by Lee Schneider

Dads are getting some respect. Can you guess where from? Their wives? Their kids? Their bosses?  Naw, they already get lots of respect from those people.  (Well, maybe not from their kids, but that’s another blog.)

Dads are getting respect from marketers. That’s right, the same people who have profited for years portraying dads in commercials as incompetent can’t-change-a-diaper numbnuts. They’re studying research on family buying habits. They’ve discovered something they previously overlooked. Dads got game.

Dads are making more decisions about the family than ever before. They are even buying things for the family that they never bought before, like Huggies, baby food and fluffy animal toys.  We dads know the difference between a Gund and a Wubbanub.  (Look it up.)

Why does this make a difference to marketers? Mass marketing is over. When my father was an executive at ABC, the audience share for the network was huge. Now they feel lucky when their Nielsen score matches their shoe size.

As Seth Godin wrote in his blog:

The challenge of mass media was how to run ads that would be seen by just about everyone and have those ads pay off. That problem is gone, because you can no longer run an ad that reaches everyone. What a blessing. Now, instead of yelling at the masses, the marketer has no choice but to choose her audience.

Dads have become an audience worth your attention. According to a recent story in The New York Times, dads are doing more around the house than couch surfing and watching the game. They are doing more grocery shopping and housework and kid-wrangling. They’re getting pretty good at it, too, according to some of the daddy bloggers interviewed as they attended a conference in Houston called Dad 2.0.

That there is even a real conference called Dad 2.0 should tell you something. Dads have finally grown up. They’ve been through the fire of getting laid off, divorced, and learning how to say ‘we’re pregnant.’ (Just a little note: how the hell can two people be pregnant with the same baby? It’s an abuse of the language akin to using ‘impact’ as a verb. If you ever meet me, don’t say ‘We’re pregnant and it has really impacted us’ because it will make me want to impact you with something.)

Just as moms have wrestled for years with how to navigate the workforce and run a house, we dads also wrestle with the multitasking of the soul. We have made dinner and vacuumed under the bed. We’ve given the kids a bath and remembered to take the kids out of the bath before mom got home. We’ve learned to be vulnerable and to show love. We’ve learned how to be present, and not just while in a conference room at work or on the road. We’re there for our kids and wives.

No wonder we’re getting more respect.

Image courtesy zoeysattic via Etsy and used with permission.


Thunder Thunder Thunder ThunderCats

Written by Lee Schneider

A writer from the UK contacted me recently with the news that he is writing a book about ThunderCats. I wrote four scripts for the series, which later became a beloved media fetish object. (“Honey, what are you doing with that plush toy?”) The writer wants me to reminisce about cartoons and recall stories of my writing cohorts. Well, some are dead, others had out of body (and mind) experiences, and still others are perfectly happy today, procreating, creating fiction and shopping.

There was Bill Overgard. I met him once: I remember only a leather jacket and a puff of smoke; a man of mystery. I had no idea he was a comics icon, a veteran of 31 years of drawing Steve Roper and Mike Nomad, and a protégé of Milton Caniff who assisted Caniff on Steve Canyon. Bill wrote screenplays and novels, and when his scripts for ThunderCats came in I had no clue how we were going to get the animators to turn these adventurous works of literature into cartoons.

When I look back I wonder: Why did I get that job and why was it useful? Why did my writing journey include furry superheroes? Here’s a little story:

Steve Jobs, CEO of Apple Computer, went to Reed College for six months and then dropped out. He slept on the floor in friends’ rooms and returned coke bottles for the five-cent deposit. He decided to take a calligraphy class. He learned about serif and san serif typefaces, the varying amount of space between letters and what makes for great typography. He found it fascinating and had no hope of it ever having any practical application in his life.

Ten years later he was designing the Mac computer and it all came back to him. The Mac became the first computer with beautiful typography. Other manufacturers copied the Mac and that’s the reason we have all these fonts and we’re not writing in courier; because Steve took calligraphy.

It’s easy, of course, to connect the dots looking backward. Going forward, well, we’ve built life’s road and we’re walking along it. We’re always preparing, but what are we preparing for?

My ThunderCats journey didn’t have a map. In 1986 we’d just had our first child, I needed a job, my father knew a guy who knew a guy and I found myself in a room with Jules Bass, Arthur Rankin and Peter Lawrence. I couldn’t have predicted how they would teach me about visual thinking, a skill I use every day, and also about being a superhero, a necessary thing for any journalist.

ThunderCats lives on, with a Facebook page, a cartoon network series (that some of the original ThunderCats folks don’t think much of), and they’ve started a Save the ThunderCats campaign.

Lee Schneider is creative director at Red Cup Agency.