Small Business Trends Radio

Going on Radio? Know How It Works.

Small business owners sometimes ask Your Business Blogger how radio works, how it can help companies sell. Radio, either satellite or terrestrial, has brutal Darwinian measures: Ratings and Revenue. But radio can be the perfect medium for the small business owner to share her expertise with a wide audience — providing education in exchange for exposure.

And this is all the radio Executive Producer and owners care about, advancing the company agenda. And how guests can fit into that mission.

I recently interviewed the smartest Executive Producer I know about the components that go into her job. The secret to getting top listener numbers and big bottom line numbers.

I sat down with Charmaine who is the Executive Producer of a radio production as part of her portfolio of responsibilities as Communications VP of an 8 figure non-profit. She gave three points: Talent, Technicians and Techniques.

Talent. Not surprisingly: the on-air talent — host and guests played the dominant role. The on-air personalities give radio, the show, the magic. “They make it look easy,” Charmaine says. “But it’s not.”

The radio talent is show business at its best — and its most difficult. The only communication vehicle is your voice. And the performance is all at the margins — not really noticed — but is subliminal.

Technicians. The experts that take the voices in the studio and push them through pipes and airwaves and into your radio. Charmaine prefers to hire professionals who read and write blogs. (She also runs the corporate website and blog.) The first challenge she handled was to sell budget increases to buy superstars out of the market place. She well understood the trade-offs on managing world-class individual contributors, but felt this was the only strategy to move her program to the next level.

Technique. Each technician she hired or inherited actively pursues continuing education. In any single month, someone on her staff is taking voice lessons, learning a software program or attending a background lecture on product or service issues. The professional staff is responsible for developing marketing campaigns for promotional items presented on the radio program. But Charmaine’s real secret technique is,

…to make the trains run on time, and yet give the on-air talent the time and space to review and rehearse.

Her marketing responsibilities also include decisions on selecting content, scripting and guests to advance the larger mission of her organization. Her recent radio guests, Bill Bennett and Mitt Romney provided the entertainment and the education to advance her goals.

Business owners are the talented leaders of their enterprises; they should also prepare to be entertainers.

3 Responses to “Going on Radio? Know How It Works.”

  1. Chris Says:

    You mentioned a key topic here – “Each technician she hired or inherited actively pursues continuing education.”

    That is one of the most important factors involved with success. . .staying on top of the latest technology and educating yourself with regards to it. Without a major focus on continued education, the world eventually seems to pass you by.

  2. Jack Yoest Says:

    Chris, you are right: Training is never wasted. Permit me a life-changing example:

    Thanks for your comment,

  3. Chris Says:

    Thanks for the article link and the inspirational story!

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