How To Present On The Radio....
After spending over 20 years presenting shows on radio
stations in the UK here is my list of tips on how to present programmes on the radio.
Mention the station name at least every 15 minutes. Some stations require this to be done during every link. If playing 3 songs back to back then a sweeper ID is played between each song.
Be Local - learn about the area that you are broadcasting to. Sound knowledgeable about the area, check pronunciation of place names if unsure. Have a drive round the area that you are broadcasting to, look at the local landmarks so when you mention the local football club you know what you are talking about.
Be topical, or trivial, or relevant - (or all three!!!)
Look after your support staff, treat news/sport readers with respect. They are not an intrusion on your programme. Listeners tune in for this information as much as they do to listen to you.
Paint pictures - make use of imagery on air - use links in a way that paints a picture in the mind of the listener. Use produced sound - edit live.
One thought one link - most listeners will only take in so much information at one go, if you hit them with three different items by the time they have heard the third they will probably have forgotten what you said at the beginning.
Shrink your link! - do not waffle, think about who you are aiming each link at, plan ahead and if you have nothing to say then just play the music, your audience will love you for it.
Keep links short into breaks, use Q cards or teasers to features or strong songs that are on the way in the next 15 minutes.
Promote ahead - you should always be looking to the next 15 minutes to keep your audience listening just that little bit longer.
Never talk out of breaks - play a station ID and straight to music.
Check new scripts Q cards, promos before reading on air - you don't want to be the one to find the spelling mistake or the line that doesn't make sense.
If the station is running a competition make sure that you understand any elements that may involve you.
Only talk about the weather that will immediately affect the listener. 8-10 hours ahead is ample - unless it's Friday and everybody is looking forward to the weekend or to a special event.
Always prefade your tracks - do not trust your music scheduling computer to give you the correct information - this will also remind you of how the track starts and prevents the chance of you talking over the vocals.
If a song has a proper end then let it finish before talking, if a song fades, still remember that it's someone's favourite song before you destroy it! Do not talk over the beginning and the end of a song - this really annoys listeners especially if it is their favourite song. Respect the music. Ask the question is it necessary to back announce every song you play, it's sometimes better to throw ahead to a song - and don't always make it the next one.
Don't mention other radio stations or other station presenters even if they are in the news as this just gives the opposition free publicity.
Always make the station sound BIG, sound authoritative and friendly. Don't put listeners down, you need as many as you can get - remember that when the survey comes in, no listeners means no job.
Where a popular feature or show has been moved due to restructuring of the schedule, talk up the change at the old broadcast time, this obviously reminds regular listeners that they can still hear the "horoscopes/comic cuts etc. at....." Always sound positive about the moves.
Never criticise the music because as far as the listener is concerned all the songs were chosen by you. If you don't like a particular song just ignore it, if you really do like a particular piece of music then say so.
Remember to check faxes and emails during your show. It could be you that has a major story or humorous item first.
YOU....are an entertainer
YOU....are a friend, on the radio, in the community, on the phone
NEVER abuse your position
Check out my tips on how to make a demo tape
If you're interested in becoming a News Reader here's a bit of advice
If you're interested in becoming a Voice Over Artist this page has more information you might find useful
For more information check out the following website....
Radio Presenting, become a radio presenter, broadcaster or DJ. A beginners guide to presenting on the radio