No Experience = No Job, but No Job=No Experience

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musicmonet
Posts: 5
Joined: Tue Jan 29, 2013 11:38 am

No Experience = No Job, but No Job=No Experience

Post by musicmonet » Wed Jan 30, 2013 6:54 am

I was hoping maybe someone could give me some advice. I'm graduating college in about 3 1/2 months and I began the job search a couple of months ago. Even though I've been involved with my college radio station for three years and I'm the PD it's like no one counts that as experience. Almost every job post I see says you need experience but you can't get experience without a job. It's like no one wants to take a chance on a fresh face. Can any of you give me any advice? Thanks.

1lossir
Posts: 10
Joined: Mon Apr 18, 2011 8:47 am

Re: No Experience = No Job, but No Job=No Experience

Post by 1lossir » Thu Jan 31, 2013 1:58 pm

Sure, I'll take a stab at it.

Realistically you should have begun the job search two years ago by building relationships with the stations in your local market and beyond. Radio is more of a "who you know" than "what you know" business. Ads generally are out there to satisfy EEO requirements; over 90% of the time the gig's been filled and the ad's a formality.

Now, since you haven't done that networking - start doing it today. But don't just send random e-mails to PDs. First, give them something to listen to before you contact them. Yep - build yourself a website with demos, accolades, anything that you think would sell you to an employer. No money, you say? Webhosting can be found cheap and I bet you can find a college bud or two who could slap something together in a weekend or two.

Then send those e-mails - with a link to your site. None of this "I'm ready to talk to you" or "e-mail me for info" crap. Make it EASY for a prospective employer to hear your stuff and see your potential.

Good luck!

towerspace
Posts: 4
Joined: Fri Feb 01, 2013 8:32 pm

Re: No Experience = No Job, but No Job=No Experience

Post by towerspace » Fri Feb 01, 2013 8:38 pm

Let me add that I agree with the previous poster, but I think you should take advantage of any job banks from broadcaster association(s) in the state(s) you're looking. Occasionally, a decent lead can turn up, but expect plenty of competition nowdays. I worked from 1982 into 2007 from 250w small market to being a traffic reporter on a half-dozen 100Kw flame throwers. Being aware and being adaptive are the two best attributes which helped me.

Criptor
Posts: 79
Joined: Tue Nov 03, 2009 7:51 pm

Re: No Experience = No Job, but No Job=No Experience

Post by Criptor » Fri Feb 01, 2013 10:03 pm

Ahh probably the most frustrating things about working in the broadcasting industry. Another tip I can say to do is to work at a local "LP-FM" even if it's for free. Build up a resume and send that as well to employers, sometimes it takes a job to get a job. But don't forget to talk with stations in your area and in areas you can easily get to. Get to know the station you are applying for, get to know their audience, their formats, try to do a free gig with an LP-FM doing that type of format and send it over with the statement you are trying to get a job with them. Sometimes that might work. Whatever you do be as moldable as possible, tell the employer you will jump as high as they want, and willing to work as hard as it takes to become the best. Tell them you are the best and will work as hard as it takes to prove to them you are the best. Kissing butt sometimes works. But whatever happens good luck to you. Sometimes getting a job in another field can transition into a broadcasting career as well. Do you know something that might make an interesting topic? Are you particularly good with something the stations audience would enjoy. These types of ideas might transition into a broadcasting career as well. But again this is advice from someone who's been out of the game for a few years. It might work it might not. In my case, it didn't. But don't let that discourage you, one person's failure can be another persons glory. Good luck out there, it's a tough market, and don't forget to apply to other areas of interest while you seek out broadcasting gigs, always remember to diversify your income. The recession taught me that one.

Criptor
Posts: 79
Joined: Tue Nov 03, 2009 7:51 pm

Re: No Experience = No Job, but No Job=No Experience

Post by Criptor » Fri Feb 01, 2013 11:00 pm

I worked for free for basically 10 years, 2 college radio stations MD for one, DJ for both one show was voted among my classmates as the best show on campus, 2 simultaneous internships with local stations in my area (rare among my classmates) one of which turned into a job in 2008 for 6 months (the only paid gig in radio I ever had) until I was laid off for the economy I assume since no reason was given. And 5 years for a LP-FM as DJ/MD and I actually made our station one of the best little stations in the country according to Paste Magazine we were number 2 on the list in 2010 while simultaneously doing MD duties for an internet radio station Acoustic Alternative Radio for like 2 years (telecommuting) helping make them one of the top internet stations in the world according to Shoutcast/Yahoo in 2010 as well. I had to quit the LP-FM last April cause I couldn't afford to do it anymore, they still love me there however lol. I had to quit the Acoustic Alternative one for the same reason. And none of that garnered me any actual paid jobs with any station nationwide that I applied to. I even tried to get into the music business through the few contacts I got with my MD duties and that got me no where either unfortunately in spite of my helping a small local band in my area go from no hits to getting top 5 in the running for a nationally syndicated show on CBS and picking at least 100 hits before they went national probably more I did my own hunting not just taking what's written here or FMQB and such. I did all of that for free, mostly because I thought it was fun I didn't have any formal training or money from the band in being an A&R guy I just used my gut and my lifetime of listening to music and it worked. But I had to give up, didn't have much choice in the matter, I have bills to pay and not paying them isn't in my to do list. I still help the band when they send me their newest material and I help them any way I can however but I don't know what to tell you. The job hunt is pretty thin.

robnokshus
Posts: 66
Joined: Thu Oct 01, 2009 6:15 am

Re: No Experience = No Job, but No Job=No Experience

Post by robnokshus » Mon Feb 04, 2013 5:14 pm

You don't mention whether or not you've held an internship, but you have 3-1/2 months to do so. Use that college radio experience of yours in a real radio station. It is not unheard of for internships to turn into paid positions. You will then be able to start networking and building contacts in the radio industry. Go above and beyond what you are asked to do and demonstrate a strong work ethic. Almost everyone in radio these days wears many hats. Best of luck to you.

musicmonet
Posts: 5
Joined: Tue Jan 29, 2013 11:38 am

Re: No Experience = No Job, but No Job=No Experience

Post by musicmonet » Tue Feb 05, 2013 3:05 pm

I've been an intern at WIHT since last May. Just to add

cuddzu
Posts: 101
Joined: Fri Sep 25, 2009 3:24 pm

Re: No Experience = No Job, but No Job=No Experience

Post by cuddzu » Fri Feb 08, 2013 5:31 am

Why not buy a Flip and do a show yourself?

It's the Internet age, create a podcast, do a video show, be creative. Create a brand and product. "Who needs a Radio station?" is what I hear many younger people looking into Broadcasting saying now.

Create something online and become attractive on your own. I would bet there are some college buds of yours who would be willing to help out.

Just a thought. If I was your age and had the Web ever since I was born, I would be all over this.

Good luck!
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musicmonet
Posts: 5
Joined: Tue Jan 29, 2013 11:38 am

Re: No Experience = No Job, but No Job=No Experience

Post by musicmonet » Mon Feb 11, 2013 1:55 pm

Yeah the podcast thing is something that I would do as a side project. No offense, but sitting in my room doing a podcast is not going to pay the bills. It's not even going to pay for a gallon of gas to go into my car.

halltalk
Posts: 178
Joined: Mon Oct 05, 2009 2:21 am

Re: No Experience = No Job, but No Job=No Experience

Post by halltalk » Wed Feb 13, 2013 4:21 pm

musicmonet -

Some brief advice from a guy who's been in radio longer than you've been alive. And trust me, I've about done it all. Still - I don't KNOW it all so it's just advice.

Some of the stuff in this thread is good. Networking, a cool resume/web site. I'd hold off on any podcasts for a simple reason. I have no clue as to your level of work but if a prospective employer checked it out and heard or saw something they didn't like - you're done. Don't give anyone extra reasons to say "no".

I like your experence level. It might not impress a PD of a NYC CHR but there are lots of small/medium/ good sized indie stations that you can target. There are several in my market that would value college PD experience. Pick out cities you like and then research at least one station in each market. Send a WRITTEN NOTE to the PD and/or GM to briefly introduce yourself. Tell them your expeience (briefly) and what you're looking for (briefly) and you'd appreciate any advice they might give you. Wait two weeks. Send a follow-up e-mail, not a letter. Wait a week and then call. If they have a warm body answering the phone, get his/her name. Now you've had 3 contacts in a month or so and you're becoming familiar. You can sense if there is zero interest and, if so, move on without burning bridges. I'd start with 5-10 stations and concentrate on them.

I'd have a BRIEF(3 minutes max) aircheck and a professional resume. Be prepared to even send CDs of your stuff. It's surprising how many employers will NOT go to websites and will NOT open attachments.

Stay focused. Keep track of what was sent, who you spoke with and don't do anything creepy, like call 6 times a day.

Good luck. Keep us informed ...

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