It’s no secret that radio has evolved over the years and one of the biggest changes came some years ago when evolution saw the end of the need for announcers with those Golden Tonsils. You remember the 70’s, 80’s and part of the 90’s and those guys with that Big Booming radio voice… well it’s pretty much now gone from the radio landscape… Why? Because it’s fake.
So I need to ask the question – Why are people still trying to do this this?
I was at a function only recently and I met an announcer from the local radio station. He had no idea of my line of work but I was a little taken back when he opened his mouth and put on a show from the roll of dice. I couldn’t help myself and playing innocent I had to ask the question “Is that your radio voice”? Just when I thought this couldn’t get any more embarrassing for the poor bloke, it did. “Mate this is how I talk all the time, that’s why I’m in radio.”… Im thinking to myself “oh my goodness please stop talking”… He lied straight to my face… How do I know? Later in the evening he found out what I did for a job and he came over to talk about radio and pitched himself in the best way he could just incase I was ever looking for someone to fill a role. Nothing wrong with that right? Here’s the thing though, he was a completely different person. His words were “This is my persona and I have to keep up appearances at functions because that’s what his listeners are used too”. It was then when he uttered the words I hoped he really wouldn’t “You know what it’s like”?
No… no I don’t know what it’s like because in my 25 years in radio (bar maybe 1 or 2 at the start) I’ve never been any different on the air to who I am off the air. Listeners are not stupid and they see straight through the fasade. Your audience can smell when someone is not authentic or real and have a zero tolerance for fake people. So if you are starting out in radio and you do have a radio voice then Stop! Now! Your job on the radio is to be as authentic and real as you can. You can’t do that if you are trying to be someone you are not.
One of the best compliments you could ever receive from a listener is “You sound exactly like you do when I listen to you on the radio”. If you can get that sort of feedback then you know you are nailing this radio thing and you’ve connected with your audience.