Thursday, 27 September 2012

Technical difficulties.

Hello faithful readers,

I know you're out there somewhere, maybe it's your parents basement or maybe it's you office, whatever. Today I'm going to share some advice on how to react when technical difficulties occur. I wont say that I wasn't warned before I started The Morning Hike that technical difficulties happen, but to the extent they happened this morning was a wee bit much.

First of all, my co-host and I couldn't hear each other through our headphones. Lets just say panic followed immediately. Mike, my co-host and myself were furiously phoning everybody we could think of trying to sort out this chaos. It took us 15 minutes to solve this problem and when we thought the madness was over, we were wrong.

Eventually we could hear each other again, and we were on top of the world for about half an hour. Fantastic right? Wrong. No, it wasn't fantastic because we had lined up an interview with the Dean of Business and Applied Arts from Red River College, and needless to say we were stoked. However what we weren't anticipating was for more technical difficulties, especially after the fifteen minute fiasco we had already gone through earlier in the morning. We never ended up having the interview, the dean could hear us but we couldn't hear him, so we lost are opportunity to interview the dean.

If this was a swat analysis I'm not sure if this specific scenario would fall under a threat or weakness, I don't know if anybody really knows. Either way the dean is a nice guy and he has agreed to another interview some other time, which is awesome.

Advice: Don't lose your cool, or at least try to recover as quickly as possible once you do. Trust me, I was sweating. I was bummed out for a few hours after my radio show and let me tell you this, being bummed out is not a productive way of being. You're angry, frustrated and to sum it up nicely, you're pissed off. I walked into an image editing and design course I'm taking and started a fire storm. John are you al-right people kept asking me. No I'm steaming was a response of mine. Was I legitimate for being angry yes, should I have let it ruin my morning, no. Advice, relax, you'll live another day.

Next time, I'm hoping to practice composure. Composure is something I value but really need to work on, and if you're on radio you should focus on composure too. Composure is your friend, study it, practice it and act like you have it even if you don't, because it's unattractive to be that guy who loses it over minor things that are really out of your control. That angry guy for no reason, just isn't cool.

I hope this helps you in your journeys to becoming radio personalities, It is something I now know to expect in the future. Will I behave more maturely, maybe, or at least I sure hope so.

I will once again leave you with a track. A track by a band I quite enjoy Local Natives. This song I believe is about his grandfather and for some reason it speaks to me. Maybe it will speak to you too.

Friday, 21 September 2012

What I wish I knew before I started my morning radio show.

Producing a daily two-hour morning radio show has many challenges, especially when you’re new to the medium and have little experience at waking up everyday at 5am. one of many skills you need to have is being able to paint a picture in your audience’s imagination, tell them a story that is either entertaining or that provides useful information. You need to be able to execute this skill during every music break. And when you're show is two hours long, you need to prep about 15 talking points which can be quite challenging especially when juggling the rest of your life duties.  You need to be able to conduct interviews effectively, and make them entertaining or interesting and have the skill of being able to bring out the best in the person you are interviewing.

You need to know about the music your playing, know about up and coming artists and concerts that your listenership would want to know about. You must be able to run contests effectively, contests that engage your audiences in ways that’s easy for them to act on. The contests should be interesting enough that they should motivate your audiences to share them with friends. A recent study shows that 92% of people trust recommendations from people they know, which I don't think is a big surprise. For more on this please follow the blog link below.

I know this all sounds like common sense, which in many cases it is, the trick is being able to integrate this into one show that makes your show unique and different, which then should have the potential to build a loyal listenership.

The first thing I wish I knew before I started the Morning Hike is to just relax, practice makes perfect and perfection is the enemy of good. You only know what you know and being honest with your listenership will create trust and help build authenticity for your show. Authenticity is my number one, always be yourself, it's better for you and actually way easier. You don't need to impress people with your music knowledge or charming personality all the time.

The second thing I wish I knew would be to be on social media, and connect with your listeners by having contests where they can interact with your show through Facebook and Twitter.This makes it so easy for your listeners to participate in your show, and is easy to monitor and can be fun for everybody involved.

The third thing I wish I knew before starting would be interview techniques. Practicing and knowing the fundamentals of interviewing cannot only make an interview, but also make sure that the person you interview wants to come back to your show, and feels comfortable in your presence.  Here is a link to the book I bought that when I have had time done some research on how I can become a better interviewer.

Here is a link to the podcast from the Morning Hike. If you haven't listen to it yet then why not listen, if you have I would love some feedback.

I will end this blog post with a song. This is just a great track from Billy Bragg & Wilco's album Mermaid Avenue and was released in the late 1990's. I hope you enjoy this track and remember to be authentic when on air, authenticity is the key to developing a successful radio personality.

Friday, 14 September 2012

A nice article about Red River Radio

The Morning Hike with John & Mike is happy to say that we survived our third week. Producing a morning show can be tough and challenging but when you're having fun time fly's. This week I will keep my post short, however next week you can expect an update about how our first contest is going.

This week I wanted to share with you and article that I'm featured in that was written by John Gaudes from the UNITER. I hope you enjoy,

I still want to include a song in my post this week. The Morning Hike has played this song a few times this week and we have received some positive feedback from our listeners. This song is by Of Monsters and Men and I feel is just a beautiful song. I hope you enjoy this song too!


Friday, 7 September 2012

The Morning Hike launches a contest.

The future of work consists of learning a living..." Marshall McLuhan

If you’re like me at all and believe the above words to be true then you would agree with me that it takes time and practice before mastering a skill. This week the Morning Hike has announced that it will be launching the shows first contest next Monday. You might call this initial announcement a teaser. We're doing this in an effort to help promote our new show but also to try and create some interaction with our listeners which will hopefully engage them in a meaningful way.
The contest is simple. It requires our listeners to make song requests through Twitter, Facebook and the telephone. Every time someone makes a request they will earn 1 Hike Mile. The winner will receive 100 dollars and we will be doing a draw at the end of the month. The contest is simple and the “what’s in it for me principle” is the principle of persuasion we used for this contest. The idea was make it easy for our audience to enter and provide them with enough incentive that they will enter more than once.
I have approximately 1 year of experience running contests for a not for profit environmental company under my belt. The best way to learn how to run a successful contest I have found is by trial and error. This will be my first ever radio contest so I’ll make sure to post what works and what doesn’t just in case any of you would like some insight on this subject. Something I think would work well for radio is a photo caption contest. The idea here is to post a funny/interesting picture to your Facebook page and ask your audience to come up with clever captions. This challenges your audience to innovate and get creative and if the prize is right you know people will participate.
That is all for this week. I will finish by playing another song for you. I will also let you know that even though we’ve only been doing the Morning Hike on Red River Radio for two weeks it feels like two months. It’s a lot of work but if your passionate about radio you will find doing a show of this sort both rewarding and fulfilling. The song I'll leave you with is by the Alabama Shakes, and is off their debut album Boys & Girls. The entire album is great and I would suggest checking it out if you like this track.