Promotions PT2 (ft. Social Media)

Social media is by far the most effective way to promote a radio station, both in terms of reach and cost. Social media itself is a free platform to promote anything you want, the only cost is what it takes to produce the content.

Social media is the first place that an interested listener or client will look to get a feel for your station and if your social media is terrible, chances are so is their impression of you.

Here are some tips for a good social media presence:

  • Create a plan for each social media account
  • Post consistantly
  • Post more images
  • Don’t hesitate in using promotional features (paid)
  • Watch your competitors
  • Utilize hashtags

For more tips click here, here or here.

 

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As always, like and follow my Twitter for updates and information! Next post will be about what a radio station does for a community!

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Promotions

What does a promotion department do at a radio station. In short, they are in charge of getting the station’s image to the public, promoting the station (doing events, sponsorships, ticket giveaways, etc) and are often in charge of the social media for the station though some have a whole department specifically for that.

Think about all that your favorite radio station does in order to promote itself, all of those things are planned and prepared with specific intentions. They may be trying to reach a certain demographic, bring listeners to their Facebook page or promoting an event that is planned by the promotions team.

Promoting the station is all about repetition and consistency, which is why it is important to have one voice for the station. This does not mean having one person speak for the station but rather having consistent themes, social media posts and recorded liners that can be related to one specific station.

Promotions is one of the most job-heavy positions in the radio industry and it can easily branch you into other areas such as sports and upwards into management.

IMG_20171105_180908_807Promotions are in charge of events and these are some that my station has done over the years.

Next post will be about social media in relation to promotions! Like and follow me on Twitter for updates and information!

Sales Pt2

Sales is not about the amount of advertisements that you sell but rather establishing a relationship with a client. Sure, you can use tons of sales techniques and rhetoric in order to oversell advertisements and make that sweet sweet commission, but that makes you trash. Instead you should go into the situation with the mindset that you are about to make a new friend that you will be continually in contact with. After you establish this relationship is when the money will follow because they will be confident and comfortable working with you.

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It does not take much to establish this relationship with the client, but here are a few tips that I use:

  • Be casual and positive
  • Maintain eye contact
  • Ask about the client’s needs
  • Dress business casual
  • Come prepared with ideas for the client
  • You are helping their business grow, not selling advertisements

All About Sales

The thing about radio is that the product or service provided is untangable, advertising through the airwaves. The sales team at any radio station is in charge of selling advertisements to a list of clients. A good sales team establishes and maintains a relationship between the radio station and the client.

The money is in sales because no one wants to do the job. You are constantly on call, you have to deal with hardheaded business owners and the return rate is depressingly low. It takes a very certain type of person to call 100 businesses and only get a return call from 10-15 of them. In sales, the return rate on cold calls to actual advertising is around 10%.

The recorded advertising liners you hear on daily radio are bought in groups and the rate depends on the time of day, popularity of show and the radio station itself. For example, drive time (prime time for radio) is 7-8am and then again from 5-6pm. These time slots can cost double if not triple than a lesser populated time.

In the next post I will talk about exactly what makes a radio sale and my approach to sales. Be sure to like, share and follow my Twitter for all the latest posts and news!IMG_20171105_190150

What does a Program Director do?

The Program Director, or PD is in charge of selecting the music that a radio station plays. Their job is one of the most influential in the entire management team. It is so important because the music that is played if reflective of the radio station itself. Building a repertoire of good songs that accurately reflect is called Imaging. Imaging is not only done by the music chosen, but also liners, themes and sound effects used.

The Program Director has to maintain relationships with local musicians by promoting their events and adding their songs on air. They also have to deal with record labels and promotional representatives to give honest feedback about the music that is sent.

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The PD at a major station shifts through hundreds of songs a week and they usually have a staff of people whose job is sorting through music choosing the songs that best fit the radio’s image. At a smaller station such as an on-campus station usually does not have a full team of Programming people so it really all does fall onto the PD to decide how the station is interpreted by the listeners.

Creating a Relationship With Listeners

When television came out many were sure that it was the death of radio. When the internet emerged and started to include multimedia, radio was considered by some to be a dying breed. When streaming services such as Spotify, Youtube Red and Apple Music came around, no one could possibly still be listening to terrestrial radio, right?

The reason that local radio is still alive and thriving is not because of the song selections, limited advertisements and exclusive promotions that the streaming services have to offer. It is because audience members like listening to local talent. They enjoy the fact that the DJ is a member of their very own community and they can relate and build a relationship with the jockey.

The local DJ is an important member of the community because they provide a lot of different information to the majority of the public in any given area. They provide weather, traffic, news and event information to the masses in a friendly way that is easily received.

I spoke about this in an earlier post, but in order to create a relationship with the listener, you have to talk to them like you would any actual friend you have. Speaking in a broadcast manner does not build relationships, while a normal conversational tone speaks volumes. IMG_20171015_185754.jpg

DJ Mannerisms to Stay Away From

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When people think of a radio DJ a few things come to mind: Loud, booming voices. Wild personalities and fast talking. None of these are truly what a radio DJ should be unless that’s their personality. Today’s radio DJ is someone that the audience wants to be friends with, a relatable voice who connects with the listener one-to-one.

 

Here are some things to avoid as a radio DJ:

  • Avoid making your voice deeper, booming or “Announcer like”
  • “WHATS UP EVERYBODY” – this is bad because you want to seem like you are having a conversation with the listener
  • Avoid talking about too much in a single on-air break
  • “Coming up next” while said song is now playing – this is very common, but it’s not coming up next it’s “now playing”
  • Avoid being wacky and using weird voices for the sake of doing it

If you want to learn more about being a good on-air dj check out this. For general information about advancement, salaries etc. check this out. If you don’t know where to start click here.

As always, like and share this post and don’t forget to follow my Twitter for updates and information!

How To Enhance Vocals Using Production Software

As always I am using Adobe Audition.

Okay, you have your recorded vocals but it doesn’t quite sound how you want it to, or maybe you want it to sound bigger and better. I’m going to show you what I do to enhance all of my vocal tracks and I learned these from some production people on Youtube and at radio stations I’ve been at.

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So here I am with my raw audio file

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First thing I do is find any parts of the clip that are too high or too low and I raise or lower the DB accordingly to match the rest of the clip

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I highlight the entire thing and click Multiband Compressor

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There is even a broadcast preset under this effect but I wouldn’t just click it every time because not all voices will work with it

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After that I take out all the breaths in the clip by highlighting it and going to 0DB

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After that I take out the silences at the beginning, during the breaths and the end of the clip

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The clip will be really loud so you should use another effect called Normalize (process)

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It usually is automatically set to a good point but 60% is solid

And then you’re done and export it to a .wav or other format that isn’t too lossy. If you do not know what lossy means, read this!

If there was a single Youtube channel I would recommend it would be:

https://www.youtube.com/user/musicradiocreative – Mike Russell, Voice Actor

This guy has tons of videos that range from very specific sounds to concepts to hour long tutorials on entire promos.

As always, like, follow and share!

 

Intro to Production

Production is anything from the recorded liners to advertising spots. Liners are the short audio clips that get played in between songs and talking that say things like events, what radio station you are listening to, to promotions. Advertising spots are recorded commercials, in the non profit world they are called underwriting.

All you need to produce these things are:

Once you have all these pieces of equipment set up, you can start recording!

When I record things for my station, I always start with opening Audition. It looks like this:

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This is a blank starting canvas in Audition

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I first record the vocal track using my mic and equipment

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Then I put a music bed behind it

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Add some sound effects, fades and effects and the recorded liner is good to go!

This is just a very basic liner, but trust me when I say it can get really complex. Let me know if you have any production questions and don’t forget to like, share and follow my Twitter!

What makes radio entertaining?

Something that is heard frequently in the radio world is “I thought radio was dying” and “Who listens to the radio anymore?”. They did a study in the 70s about media consumption among Americans over 11 and the results were that 93% listened to the radio weekly. This number is the exact same today, in 2017 93% of Americans listen to the radio weekly. If you are a huge nerd and want to see a more in depth breakdown of radio listening stats, here is the Radio Advertising Bureau Fact Sheet.

What draws people to the radio? Is it a lack of Spotify and Aux cord connections or is it something a little more? From what I have gathered, people like listening to their local DJs. They enjoy the conversation that is had on air and they like a friendly voice to connect with their favorite station. As an on-air DJ you have to realize this, people are coming to you as a friend and they want to be talked to like a friend.

I have a late-night hip hop show (The Night Show) with my friend DJ Stunner. In this show we realize that we are friends of the people and only talk about what they want to hear about. A good DJ knows their audience and how to speak to them as such. During this show we talk about what is going on in the hip hop world as well as talking about things that interest a hip hop listener. Any one can go on a mic and read out some written lines but it takes a talented DJ to really connect with the audience.

Let me know if you have any area of radio that you would like to find about more about and smash that follow button on Twitter.

You can listen online at tmn.truman.edu

Picture: Me and DJ Stunner at The Night ShowIMG_20170907_231334