Morning Show Tune Up for 2010

Dave Charles – ByrnesMedia

We know that a great Morning Show is the engine that drives your brand. Make sure then you protect it, grow and promote it.  Above all look after your talent and make sure they are focused on what your audience wants and expects from the show.

Here are a few worthwhile tips for Program Directors

You’ve got to be directly involved as a PD in helping to develop and shape the show.  This helps to build great content and trust for the evolution of the Morning Show.  Many PDs who are multi-tasking need to step back and re-align their priorities to make sure that the most important  show on their station gets the time it requires to grow and evolve. If you’re not now directly involved, make the right decision to  coach your Morning Show.  The PDs that do this on a daily basis are the ones getting the results.

A good exercise to go through on a weekly basis is a S.W.O.T. analysis of your Morning Show and that of your competitors.  Strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats allow the team to quickly see what areas are affecting the show in a positive and negative way. It’s important to have that balance.

Assess the Morning Show categories that have real value from the audience perspective.

  • Entertaining talent (people that relate to my life and speak directly to me)
  • Immediate & very local (know what the hot spots are daily and weekly in the community you serve)
  • Social Media balance (Twitter, text, Facebook, blogs) are now important information resources from your audience.
  • Fun features and contests (What feature is your station most know for? What tactics are you using to keep it fresh?)
  • Essential information (make sure that you cover the local stories and entertainment news that people will talk about at work)
  • Community involvement (Girl hockey team needs ice time. Adopt a pet.  Morning show to the rescue)
  • Primal topics and angles (Primals are about making emotional connections. Joy, love, tragedy, fear, greed, relationships)
  • Comedy (Classic comedy always ranks high on the entertainment scale. Night Talk Show, soap opera, Jay, Conan, Letterman)
  • Hot topic of the day (Haiti needs our help now. Seize the moment and take action led by the Morning Show.)
  • Big Story (H1N1 flu shots and updating locations for getting shots.)
  • Made my day (in what way? Good news story.)

From the talent’s perspective be aware of the following:

  • Talent wants to know that you’ve listened to their show.  They want feedback.
  • They need praise and thanks if they’ve done something special.  Relate positive audience feedback as well.
  • Make sure meetings are well organized with agendas.  One hour maximum. Keep notes.
  • Your Morning team needs time to get out and gather new information from the community. Relationships require personal contact. Name dropping is useless until you connect that name with something.
  • Coaching NOT critiquing.  Know the difference. I hear some horror stories from talent that gets abused in sessions. Not smart.
  • Never compare your talent to other shows.  They hate that and it really achieves nothing.
  • Honesty grows trust.  Simple to say, however you need to remember this as you develop your relationship with the team.
  • Confidence to perform at their best requires your direction and personal support.
  • Don’t blame if something goes wrong.  Rather, fix the problem.  Your sense of humanity on bad days goes a long way.
  • Brainstorm to solve problems and create new ideas. Bring in other members of the staff to contribute.
  • Good talents always keep their options open.  If you don’t engage them the right way, others will.

We have prepared a special Morning Show RED ZONE presentation which is available exclusively to Byrnes Media clients which many of you will see in the weeks ahead.