We had the good fortune of connecting with Jackie Naparlo and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Jackie, how has your perspective on work-life balance evolved over time?
This is actually a really interesting question for me as balance was the catalyst unbeknownst to me at the time that grew my business. I’ve always worked for companies in the music industry. From William Morris to Live Nation and most recently ASM Global. I booked concerts for each company across the US and most recently for 3 venues in Richmond, VA: the Richmond Coliseum, Altria Theater and Carpenter Theatre at Dominion Energy Center. I got pregnant with my second child in 2018 and was struggling to balance home life and professional. I was working 60-70 hours a week and many nights at shows. My work was my life and a huge part of myself so I wasn’t ready to give it up but I also felt huge pressure to be home with my kids and my husband. I wanted to be there for them and all their small little milestones. I had a VERY supportive boss at the time who I worked with to create a new structure. I would no longer be an employee but a consultant for the venues. My role would stay the same, I would book the shows, but I would be on my own, able to create my own schedule, work from home and open up my time to my family. As things would progress no only did it open up time for my family but it also allowed me to organically grow my business. Today, not only do I book the two venues in Richmond, but I started my own promotions company, booking and promoting shows for National tour. Most recently, Louis CK’s 2019 US Comedy tour. I also grew my side hussle, a custom promotional merchandise company into a full business I’m proud of.
What should our readers know about your business?
I would say nightowl is comprised of two arms: the promotional merch arm, and the concert promotion arm. For the promotional merch side of things, I saw a gap in the advertising specialty field which lacked a truly creative approach that could offer smart and cool products. There had to be better products out there other than dollar key chains and plastic sports bottles. It was also so impersonal. Custom Ink or 4imprint made it easy, but you’re overpaying for products that look and feel cheap with no real tie to your brand. I wanted to take the approach that nightowl would really learn about their brands, which is the only way to truly amplify them correctly. Picking a product to put your name on is so important and I think that got lost with these larger sites. nightowl promo, the concert promotion arm is what I’m most proud of. It’s a scary leap going from a company to promoting concerts soley. The risk financially is much greater but the potential reward and freedom is something that is inexplicably wonderful. I’m so thankful that I have great partners that have made it feel easy.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
“While you weren’t looking, Richmond got cool.” – Quoted from Frommers. Craft breweries, bakeries, art galleries, coffee houses and inspired farm-to-fork eateries are opening at every turn, revitalizing some of the once-rough parts of the city. Scott’s Addition is definitely a must stop for some brewery crawls. Outside – Maymont Park – 100 acres of beautiful landscape, animals and a mansion from the 1900’s. the Pipeline – gorgeous river views. It’s beautiful brige over the James River leading to Brown’s Island. Stay – Quirk Hotel – “Quirky” boutique hotel and art gallery with a great rooftop bar and restaurant Eat – L’Opposum, East Coast,
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
Dolly Vogt. Dolly was my boss at ASM Global. She recognized before even I did that I was not going to be able to balance the position I had and the life I wanted to have at home. She came up with a structure that would work for the company and for myself. I owe everything to her, her mentorship, and her compassion for my situation.