In the age of digital PR, it can be easy to forget about utilising traditional tactics to get your messages out. Campaigns are gaining lots of traction online, but nine in ten adults still listen to the radio every week, making it one of the most popular media forms to consume.
Radio stations are on air for several hours a day and are inconstant need of interesting content, engrossing stories, and topics to tell their audience about. Also, listening habits have changed and technology advancements mean that people can tune in to any station or show, from anywhere.
Radio appearances aren’t the only audio option available to gain coverage; people are also connecting with communities worldwide through pre-recorded podcasts published online.
To get airtime for a fraction of the cost of advertising or sponsorship, offer the people who make the radio or podcast shows your time to talk about issues relevant to your industry and any expert advice you can offer. But remember - it must be relevant to current news topics and your business area, and not purely focused on your marketing messages.
Because of the pandemic, it has never been easier to gain audio coverage. Radio stations and podcast companies used to opt for guests that could get into the studio quickest, but for the foreseeable, everyone will be working from home. Using mobile and home phones instead of high-quality audio lines is becoming the norm and making appearing on a radio show more accessible.
Radio interviews don’t usually run longer than five minutes, whereas you could be chatting for much longer on a podcast. Whilst these mediums differ slightly, the same advice applies.
Here are my five top tips, as a former radio producer:
1. Say it clearly and with confidence
You’ve offered your time or been asked to appear because you are the expert, so make sure you have the facts nailed and know roughly what you will be speaking about. Don’t worry about slipping over your words or using ‘um’ or ‘yeah’ as a filler to allow your brain to catch up – it is natural and happens in everyday conversations. Radio is great way to dip your toe into the broadcast water for the first time and improve your public speaking skills.
2. Listen to what the presenter asks you
If you aren’t listening to the questions the presenter or journalist is asking, how are you meant to give them your best answers? Sometimes nerves can throw you off topic, so keep a note when you are on air about what is being discussed, so you can round your answer off with something relevant.
3. Make sure your sound quality is clear
Broadcasters know you won’t have a home studio set up but try and keep noise interference to a minimum. If you are recording from home, find a quiet spot where won’t get interrupted. If the piece is live, check to make sure you have a strong signal and for optimum noise cancelling surroundings, make a fort out of duvets and pillows.
4. Don’t make it an advert
Everyone knows you are there to showcase your business and expertise but keep product and service chat to a minimum unless directly asked. The general public listening at home will lose interest and you will be less likely to get asked back on the show again. The aim with radio coverage is to be relevant, in turn making your brand seem knowledgeable, authoritative and industry experts.
5. Have the listener in the back of your mind
Remember that the person interviewing you isn’t the only party in your conversation, even if it makes you nervous thinking of everyone listening at home. Thanks to the digital world we now live in, attention spans are shortening but communicating via radio enables brands to communicate their messages without demanding the audience’s full attention. But make sure you give them a reason to listen up.
If you’d like to have a chat about how we can help you get on the radio, get in touch.