The Keys to Sports Radio Success
I was going to title this blog entry “How Not to Annoy Your Boss and Co-workers,” because the inspiration for this comes from last night’s sports radio chat on twitter (#srchat). The question — what are your biggest pet-peeves of sports talk radio? — was posed to everyone on the chat including special guest Clear Channel’s VP of Sports Bruce Gilbert. I’ve taken their answers and turned-them-inside-out like a secret decoder ring to unveil the keys to sports radio success.
Be humble. You are not the smartest guy in the room. It’s okay to say –I don’t know.
“The point of your radio show is not to prove how smart you are, it’s to entertain, inform, and make people think.” – Bruce Gilbert, Clear Channel VP of Sports
Be adult. Accept the fact that sometimes callers swear and we have to dump them. The 14-year-old boy inside you thinks it’s hilarious. No need to make a deal out of it on the air though.
Respect the listener. Everyday have a plan and pour your heart and soul into it. No room for laziness. Keep conversations about tech issues, chatter with board op and producers, office gossip and inside-jokes off the air.
Callers ≠ Success. Callers can be great, just remember they are not a reflection of your success. Don’t let the blinking lights guide you.
Prepare For Interviews. When interviewing keep questions focused on the topic, keep them short, make sure each question is a question and not just a statement and forego the opening interview niceties (i.e. “How are you?)
Play the hits. Immerse yourself into the big stories and relish it. When sports hosts complain about having to discuss the top stories, ESPN Radio exec Pete Gianesini points to the weather channel and wonders aloud if they would ever stop covering a hurricane in the middle of the storm because they were tired of talking about it. He’s got a point.
Be a leader. On and off the air talk to people not down to them – includes coworkers, listeners, clients, guests, interns, etc. Work with people smarter and more talented than you and treat them better than they treat you.
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