A – Airchecks from your CD are going to come at you left, right and centre. These monitors or Air checks are designed to help you build a more engaging show. It’s hard to hear certain things when you work inside the show on a daily basis so your Content Director is there to lead, mentor and encourage you.
B – Banter Is key between you and your On Air Co-host. If you have great banter off the air then chances are it’s going to transfer to the show as well.
C – Content is king when putting together a breakfast show. The 70/30 rule normally applies to most shows. 70% of the show needs to be planned for the following day allowing just 30% of content to organically happen over night which you can slot into the show.
E – Editing is a skill you will need to learn if you don’t know it already. Often in a breakfast show you will need to make an edit to a piece of audio with 30 seconds to go before your song runs out! Editing is a great skill to have. Learn it!
D – Direction is imperative for a show to be successful. If your going on a road trip it’s not very often you leave without checking your GPS. A breakfast show is exactly the same you need to map out where your show is going otherwise you run the risk of getting lost.
F – Feedback Is one of the greatest tools a breakfast show has to take itself to the next level. Feedback happens daily too from your Content Director, other industry peers, listeners, survey, Facebook, instagram and clients to the radio station. Listen to the feedback that is constructive it will help lift your game.
G – Goals are a great way to make sure that your show is functioning at the elite level. Progress on our goals makes us feel happier, Interestingly positive emotions have the potential to motivate goal-directed behaviours. The one important step that people forget about with goal setting is the celebration. You must take the time with your people to celebrate those little victories.
H – Hot topic Board is something that you have in the studio to remind you of the trending stories of the day. Pop culture, news & Sport are the 3 pillars you should have on the board. You can reference these events throughout the shows as hooks or content pieces.
I – Interaction is one of the tools you need for creating a great product. Your show needs to be “outwards” focussed and interaction was listeners and other guests will add that inclusivity layer to your show.
J – Jam Sessions are important for the development of content on your show. What Story Arc do you have lined up for the AFL Grand Final this year? If you get together with your team and throw up a few events (on brand) 9 times out of 10 you’ll nail the perfect idea if everyone contributes to the initial conversation. Don’t be to precious with your ideas and let others build on them. That’s what jamming sessions are all about.
K – KPIs are essentially goals that you are being held accountable for. Your Content Director will measure your performance by a number of KPIs during your time on the breakfast show. There might be certain KPIs based around aspects of your job. Punctuality, Content application, preparation, Public appearances are just a few KPIs that may come up.
L – Localism Is so important in breakfast radio – You have to own your city! Listeners need to feel that you are one of them. Get amongst the local sporting clubs, volunteer for the local CFA and attend lots of community events. To be a successful show you need to walk with your community and not be stuck in your little soundproof box!
M – Momentum Is something that your show will experience but not all the time. The important thing is that when The Big Mo turns up you recognise it and run with it! You’ve seen with sporting teams that when momentum is on their side they tend to be unstoppable your show is exactly the same.
N – No Go Zones exist In any working relationship and you need to make sure that it’s made clear at the start of your ON AIR life together. There might be some skeletons in the closet that your co host is not ok to discuss on the air and you need to respect that. It’s easy to have the tough conversation at the start of your working relationship rather the relationship break down because you have over stepped the mark.
O – Outside the box! That’s where you should be thinking when it comes to putting together a breakfast show. Don’t just lean on the first phoner that comes to mind. It’s often the second or third phase you land in that sets you apart from the rest of the radio landscape.
P – Preparation I know what your thinking that’s really obvious right? You would be surprised as to how many jocks go into breakfast radio half baked. They have been in the market for a while and feel they can wing it a little – they will eventually come unstuck. Doesn’t matter if you’ve been in the market 10 mins or 10 years… The old 4 P’s still dominates. Preparation, prevents, poor, performance.
Q – Quick Witt is another great skill to have and will help enhance your breakfast show. If you are not a naturally funny person “Trust me” this will develop over time. The more you get to know your On Air co-host the more chances you will get to show off your quick Witt. Some of the best breakfast shows I’ve heard often deliver this skill and it comes from a member on the team I would least expect it too. Relationships breed quick Witt.
R – Resources come in all shapes and sizes and the more you can equip yourself walking into any show is going to increase your level of productivity. The moment you land your first role is the moment you start building your resources. Never throw anything away including phone numbers and old files that you might re-use one day as your radio career progresses. Keeping everything will help set you up for success later.
S – Social Media is so important to the craft of radio these days. Radio is a multi Media platform game now and we need to make sure that we are reaching our audience on every level possible. Facebook, instagram, Snapchat, tic tok and podcasting.
T – Telephones are your friend! It’s the number one tool that radio stations use to interact with their audience even though technology has taken us past the humble Telephone. As radio develops post COVID-19 I can see our industry expanding and trying different platforms, and to be 100% truthful I’m surprised we haven’t already but until then the phone remains the most instantaneous interaction tool your audience has to get their voice heard.
U – Uber Creative is what you need to be when you are preparing for your breakfast show. Rip and read radio was outlawed a long time ago and if your are going to address something from a press release Or article then you better make sure the angle that you take is going to sound completely different to what your mates up and down the dial are doing.
V – Validation Is an important thing for a breakfast teams to feel during the life of the breakfast show. Validation can present in a number of different ways – Your Content Director might validate you in an air check telling you you’re doing a good job, listeners will call the show telling you they listen all the time and love your show, your peers might tell you what an amazing job your doing or you might outsource for some outside validation from other networks. It’s all important because you need it for your own self worth and motivation.
W – White board is the heartbeat of the show. Remember how we were talking earlier about the “Direction” of the show? Well this is where it’s displayed for all members during the show. You can map out your white board from 6am to 9am in 30 min blocks so you can keep track of where you are at. The white board should be visible to all members of the breakfast show.
X – X factor you need to stand out from the rest. What is the one thing that your show has that the others are not doing right now?? The X-Factor might be one of the talent on the show that sound completely different but also might be something the show does that is completely different.
Y – Your Personal Brand Is just as important as that of the radio station you are working for. Although they will align in a lot of ways you must also make sure that you stay true to the brand you represent. I remember once in my career I was made to wear Geelong Cats supporter apparel. If your a Cats supporter that’s not a problem right? Wrong! I’m an Adelaide Crows Supporter and that was no secret in the market I was broadcasting too so when I turned up in the local paper supporting the Cats questions were asked and we took a lot of phone calls that day. Don’t stray from your own brand!
Z – Zero tolerance to mediocre Should be something you and your team stand for every single day your show is on the air. Firstly you need to know what mediocre looks like and once you can identity that then you have a measuring stick to compare too. Mediocre doesn’t just cover the content on the air but the work rate behind the scenes to make it happen, the attitudes of your team members and contributors to your show externally eg: listeners.