Morning Shows in 2014 ... Teaching the team to ask "what else"?
February 11, 2014
"The stronger you start the day the stronger you finish the day".
A look at any radio station daily listening graph will confirm how true this is.
It’s still all about the morning show (listen, watch, and share )
In the fast few weeks alone I have worked with morning shows in Europe, Australia, the UK and South Africa. This has reinforced again the importance of the following;
The Key Drivers:
- The processes that allow morning shows to capture relevant content
- Deciding what to amplify and what is just a good break/link
Some of this is in the planning process.
- the day prior,
- the pre-show pre session
- the decision making during the show.
Last week I worked with a breakfast show that burnt through 11 separate content topics in just over 2 hours. It wasn’t that the topics were poor - far from it.
This was a number one rating show.
It was simply that nothing was really maximised. There was no amplification. Every topic was a "bit". Not great when a big part of the game is building time spent listening.
It’s all about burning through less content...and amplifying the good content.
Deciding what is good and giving it more depth.
Doing less and doing it better.
The Short Cuts
Look harder for the emotional entry point that allows a deeper level of engagement and communication with the audience.
(A snap shot vs a movie.....one is simply a moment in time....the other gives you the back story and the aftermath)
Do a Critical Path ...
This will teach the team how to build and expand the content.
It will help you decide how much to expand.
You will see its potential faster.
CLICK HERE to see a generic version.
Simply start with the premise (task 1), and then drill down adding the detail.
Another trick is on occasion to start with your goal and work back.
You need to create more anticipation for the content
Vertical Teasing up and down the hour
Horizontal teasing across one day to another
Add the detail. This amplification will immediately make any content more emotional and engaging
Start with a primal theme. This will show you the way. Start with "Sex/Greed/Gossip/Waistline/Sport"(these cover off everything in life)
According to Edward De Bono the "Creative Pause" is a deliberate, self-imposed pause to consider alternative solutions to the problem. These pauses can be as short as 30 seconds, and he recommends they should happen even when things are going well. His reasoning behind it was that ‘some of the best results come when people stop to think about things that no one else has stopped to think about’
Sharpen your listening skills (how often does talent focus on their next question and not listen to what a caller or guest is saying?)
Sharpen your banter/communication skills
Practise Storytelling. Great Morning Show talent can usually tell great stories.
Add the disruption factor.
For instance what question can you ask in an interview that really has the guest squirming or drives real emotion.
Check out this video for a great example of this (Thanks to Martin Bester from Kagiso Media):
Legendary South African musician Johnny Clegg joined Martin Bester Drive on Thursday 31 Oct 2013, and the team had a surprise waiting for him.
MBD got hold of Jesse Clegg, Johnny's son, whom is also a performing South African musician, who was gigging in New York at the time, and got him to record one of Johnny Clegg's most famous songs - 'Great Heart' - and Johnny's response was nothing short of tear-jerking.
The end is not the end. What happens post 9am (post the show) is often not maximised. Amplify post 9am, on the air and via social media.
Product Teams.............for reference..........are the vehicle that can drive this post morning show amplification.
TheÂ purpose of the Product Team meetings is:
To commit to 10 mins of "freewheeling" usually in reference to the morning show) daily....
When does it meet?
Product Team meetings run for a max of 15 minutes.
I personally held them at 8.45 am daily to set up the priorities for the day.
What does it discuss?
Whatever you want, but work from a generic agenda and remember a key aim is to immediately make a difference to the on air product, so insist on action points.
- Morning show...what can be amplified? On air/Facebook/Twitter/Website/Youtube
- How can we improve the major on air tactic today?
- Seize the moment opportunities? What are they?
- Any local seasonal events we can embrace?
- New opportunities/Social?
The Key Questions for Morning Shows
- Are we being brave?
- Will it(whatever the content is) be different and create talk?
- Agility. Do we demonstrate this?
- Do we need to do it today(ie could we do it better tomorrow)?
- Asking......What else?????
International Morning Show Success Criteria
- Listen/ Watch/ Share
- On air and On line planned together
- The Emotional Entry Point. Where is it?
- Story Arcs
- The Art of Disruption
To view The Big Bang archives click here.