The Ontario Association of Broadcasters has announced the winners of their Pro Radio Creative Contest. The winners, in three categories, are:
1 – The Power of Radio During in an Emergency (large scale emergencies or amber alerts) tied for the win are:
Byrnes Communications Inc.
for OAB Emergency
Durham Radio Inc.
for Power of Radio – Amber Alert
2 – The Power of Advertising on Radio (for business owners):
for The Power of Advertising on Radio
3 – The Power of Local Radio (listener & community benefits) tied for the win are:
Byrnes Communications Inc.
for OAB Local Radio
Writer: RJ Lowe, Producer: Ethan Ralph
Voice Talent: Vanda Di Michele & Abe Peters
for Local Radio 5
“Couple Appreciation Month”: To show thanks for each other’s love and emotional support. Do something special to reinforce and celebrate your relationship.
“Daffodil Month”: To support cancer research. See www.cancer.ca.
“National Oral Health Month”: See www.cda-adc.ca.
“Parkinson Awareness Month”: See www.parkinson.ca.
“Poetry Month, National”: See League of Canadian Poets www.poets.ca
“Stress Awareness Month”: To promote public awareness of what stress is, what causes it to occur and what can be done about it. See www.stresscure.com.
“Humour Month”: Special events in Canada and the US will focus on the joy and therapeutic value of laughter and how it can reduce stress. Email firstname.lastname@example.org. See humormonth.com.
Apr 1 “April Fools’ Day”: The joke of the day is to deceive persons by sending them upon frivolous and nonsensical errands; to pretend they are wanted when they are not, or in fact, any way to betray them into some supposed ludicrous situation, so as to enable you to call them “An April Fool.”
Apr 1 “Reading Is Funny Day”: April Fools’ Day is a great time to share riddles with children. It shows them that reading can be fun and funny. Riddles improve vocabulary, comprehension and oral reading, and enhance deductive and inductive thinking and develop a sense of humour. For info, Dee Anderson email@example.com.
Apr 2 “International Children’s Book Day”: Observes Hans Christian Andersen’s birthday and commemorates the international aspects of children’s literature. Call 302-731-1600, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Apr 2 “World Autism Day”: see www.worldautismawarenessday.org.
Apr 7 “World Health Day”: See www.who.int/world-health-day/en
Apr 15-21 “National Volunteer Week”: A time to recognize and celebrate the incredible efforts of our volunteers. See http://volunteer.ca/content/national-volunteer-week.
Apr 10 “National Siblings Day”: A commemorative day to honour all brothers and sisters who are living and memorialize those who have died. Annually Apr 10. Call Claudia A. Evart 212-779-2227, email: email@example.com, web www.siblingsday.org.
Apr 8-14 “National Wildlife Week”: This year, we are celebrating how we are all connected with wildlife. Share your connection online using #ThankYouWildlife. It can be a brief experience, a favourite animal, a life-altering moment – anything at all that you would like to celebrate with us. We are also cognizant that some comments will reflect your concern for wildlife but we will encourage a more positive engagement. We’re writing a letter of thanks to Canada’s wildlife and we are all its authors! See www.cwf-fcf-org.
Apr 14 “International Moment of Laughter Day”: Laughter is a potent and powerful way to deal with the difficulties of modern living. Experience the power of laughter. For info: Izzy Gesell 413-586-2634, email : firstname.lastname@example.org, web www.izzyg.com.
Apr 15 “International Microvolunteering Day” see www.helpfromhome.org
Apr 20 “Global Youth Service Day”: See www.gysd.org.
Apr 22 “Earth Day”: A day to pay attention to accelerating the transition to renewable energy worldwide. Call Earth Day Network 202-518-0044, see www.earthday.ca/pub/index.php.
Apr 22-28 “Administrative Professionals Week”: Acknowledgment of the contributions of all administrative professionals, and their vital roles in business, industry, education and government. Annually the last full week of April. Administrative Professionals Day is the Wednesday (Apr 25). For info: call the Int’l Ass’n of Administrative Professionals 816-891-6600 ext 2239 or email: email@example.com.
Apr 26 “Take Our Daughters and Sons To Work Day”: A national public education campaign sponsored by the Ms Foundation for Women in which children age 8-12 go to work with adult hosts – parents, grandparents, cousins, aunts, uncles, friends. Call 800-676-7780, email firstname.lastname@example.org, web www.daughtersandsonstowork.org.
Apr 28 “National Day of Mourning”: Day of mourning for workers killed or injured on the job in Canada.
As consultants, we see lots of resumes and talk to lots of job seekers. We are frequently asked to be involved in the hiring process to help ensure radio stations find and employ the best candidates for their positions. In the last few months we have done a lot of work in this area, so I thought it might be helpful to pass along 10 tips that might help you find your next radio job.
Read the job post carefully: The employer has hopefully put some thought into the position they are trying to fill and will have clearly set out the qualifications and level of experience they are looking for. If they are advertising for an AM Drive Host with at least two years on-air experience, that means they really are looking for someone who is not fresh out of school. Chances are there is a good reason for this. They may be in a competitive market and need someone who has the experience and the skills required to succeed in such an environment. Education is important, and in many cases, the skills taught in broadcast colleges today are far superior to even a few years ago. More importantly, though, are the hours a talent spends behind a microphone honing their skills and gaining real life experience at a radio station.
In Canada there are major, medium and small markets. When a major market station is looking to fill a position, typically the successful applicant will come from a medium market. There are exceptions, but not often. This, however, will create a position in that medium sized market, and that is normally filled by someone moving up from a small market. This then creates an opportunity in a small market, and chances are, the broadcaster in that small market will be willing to accept someone who has recently graduated from broadcast school. Now, I stress that this is not always the case and there are exceptions, but they tend to be just that, the exception and not the norm.
If you have recently graduated from a broadcast course and you see an ad that clearly states they require someone with at least two years broadcast experience, you should think carefully before applying if you have not spent the last two years working at a commercial radio station and therefore you don’t meet the job requirements. You cannot pass off the two years you spent at broadcasting college as being two years broadcast experience no matter how you cut it. But do not despair, there is a job out there for you, just not that job. Because that position was filled in a larger market there is the trickle-down effect and within a few weeks the medium market will have filled the vacated position and hired someone from a smaller market. That is the job you need to be going after.
Another reason not to apply for a job for which you are not qualified is that it may result in the potential employer feeling that if you cannot read the job ad properly you are not someone they want on their team. So, applying for a job you are not qualified for may result in hampering your chances down the road.
By the way, the advantage of starting out in a small market is you will get to do lots of different jobs, probably (hopefully) make a few mistakes along the way, and learn so much that could not be taught in school. Hopefully, this small market broadcaster will have training systems in place and provide lots of coaching and feedback. Spend two years in that small market if possible, because in year one you are still experiencing everything for the first time. In year two, you have first hand experience of all the things that happen in that market and can use that to your benefit. Don’t be in too big a hurry to get to that bigger market, until you have learned all you can from the people at the station and the people you encounter in that small market.
Do your research on the market: Before you blast off that application, spend some time researching the market, so you understand what you are getting into and what the benefits and pitfalls might be. Check out the city’s website, look for the economic data, climate information, the cost of renting or buying and who the primary employers are. Incorporate some of that information into the cover letter to let the reader know that you did some research and you know a little about the place. If possible, visit the market and drive around to get a feel for what makes it tick. It’s important that you feel good about the community and that you can communicate that to your prospective employer.
Do your research on the company and the radio station: Again, there is often lots of information about the company and the radio station that can be easily found from the comfort of your keyboard. Check the CRTC website, Google the company name, check out the radio station website and look at their LinkedIn and social media profiles. Try and listen to the radio station audio stream for a few days via their online link or the Radio Player Canada app and make some notes. What impresses you about the radio station, what do they do well, and how do you feel you can add value to this station if you are employed? Also, are there some areas you feel you could help the station using your skill set? If, for example, this station has a very mediocre website and you can demonstrate how you helped your current radio station improve their website, this might be something you mention during the interview process.
Write a targeted cover letter: Most applications include a cover letter and a resume, but generic cover letters stick out a mile when you have an in-box full of applications. Take the time to read the job ad carefully and note the two or three specific skills they are looking for that you have. Incorporate that into the letter and demonstrate that you have some knowledge of the market, the station and perhaps the company. Have others read your cover letter carefully to make sure there are no spelling mistakes or errors. The cover letter should be addressed personally to the right person and submitted in the format as directed. In my opinion, there should be three sections:
The cover letter should not be more than one page, should be in keeping with the tone of the job advertised and always be personally signed.
It probably will not come as a surprise to you that most stations will receive lots of applications for any position they advertise. I know of a position that was advertised in the last few months that resulted in over 100 applications. My friend Dave Charles, who is staffing two radio stations currently, told me he received over 350 applications. It’s all about getting your package moved to the “maybe” folder, instead of the “not worth looking at” folder. The employer will then focus on the “maybe” folder and do a deep dive on each applicant to come up with the “shortlist”, which is typically 5 applicants that move to the next stage. Ultimately, they will employ the person they feel is the most qualified and the best fit for the position and the organisation.
Carefully check your resume and update it if necessary: There are lots of experts who can coach you on how to create a resume that will get noticed. Most employers look for a clean, well laid out document that lists your experience in chronological order, your qualifications, your interests, your references, and of course how to contact you. Again, have other people look at your resume and make sure there are no mistakes. Just as your cover letter should be tailored for the job advertised, so should your resume. By the way, a recent photo is something you might want to include in the resume as that can help you stand out from the others. The old saying that a “picture paints a thousand words” can be very true when included in a resume.
Include audio or links to audio: I am astounded by the number of people who apply for an on-air position and do not include any audio with their application. This would seem such a basic thing, because without the audio, the prospective employer has no clue what you sound like. Lots of resumes these days will include a link to Soundcloud or the applicant’s website. Be sure to check these links yourself to make sure they work. If the prospective employer gets the old “Error 404” message they will likely move your application to the “no” folder. The audio should demonstrate your most recent work and what you are best at.
Be honest: It goes without saying that you should never lie on a resume, as that can be grounds for dismissal when you are found out. Do not pad your resume or exaggerate your skills or experience, as that can be easily checked with a phone call. If you get the job, but clearly cannot do it, the result is bad for both you and the station and may result in you not making it past the probationary period.
Make sure you really want to apply for the job: Before you rush off and apply for any and every job going, make sure you are really looking for a job and that you are prepared to move for the right opportunity. It is really frustrating as an employer to go through the entire recruitment and interview process and make a job offer, only to have the applicant turn down the position for a reason that comes out of left field. So, if you have a terminally ill parent that you need to be close to, if your spouse cannot relocate, or you are not really up for moving from one side of the country to the other, then please do not apply in the first place. It frustrates the employer and it will be remembered. I helped a client in the west find an entry level announcer some time ago. They flew this person to the closest major city and then it was a bus ride to the town where the radio station was located. But the applicant got part way and had a change of heart. They got on the next bus heading in the other direction and flew home without every letting the radio station know they were not coming. I have seen that same application for other jobs, but I cannot, in good faith, recommend them.
Think about geography: This was touched on in the above point. Give a lot of thought to where you want to end up and where you are prepared to move to get there. When you are young and have no ties, getting paid to hone your skills as you move from market to market is a great way to see the country and experience different cultures and traditions. If you are not prepared to move from one province to another, or from one side of Canada to the other, do not apply for jobs that are not in your geographical comfort zone. But be wary of writing off markets in parts of Canada you know nothing about. We have the pleasure of working in the Yukon and that is one of the most beautiful parts of Canada in both summer and winter. This is where the world-famous dog sled race starts or finishes every other year. If you love the outdoors this is an incredible place to live and work. People pay big money to fly from all over the world to experience the Yukon for themselves. You can do your airshift and be on the ski lift within 20 minutes of leaving the radio station.
Where to apply if you have no experience: One of the best entry level positions on a radio station is that of the Summer Cruiser person or Promotions Assistant. Most radio stations will hire one or more Summer Cruiser staff, and this is a great place to start and a great place to learn. Yes, you probably set up and tear down more remote equipment than you’ll have hot dinners and you’ll end up driving the promo vehicle all over the broadcast area. And while the hours might be long and require working lots of weekends, public holidays and nights, you will also learn a lot along the way.
Being a great Promotions Assistant or Summer Cruiser person requires skills that cannot be taught in school. You need to be outgoing, positive and able to easily interact with listeners, clients and station staff. Your ability to connect at all levels is critically important. Another skill you’ll need is being a wiz on all the social media platforms on which the radio station is active. Frankly, you may be able to offer staff some tips and tricks on how best to use each platform. Lastly, you may be able to put your video and video editing skills to good use in that position as more and more stations expect promo staff to shoot, edit, and post video on their websites and social media to grow engagement.
Doing this job, and doing it well, often leads to opportunities within the radio station or within the company. Be the person who says, “What can I do to help?” and endear yourself to as many people in the station as possible to get noticed. If a job comes up, you are already there and, hopefully, understand the people and the culture of the station. At the end of the summer, if there are no jobs available, but they really like you, they will at least give you a letter of reference and have helped you add to your resume. I got my first break when someone from corporate was visiting the radio station and somehow I impressed them. They mentioned my name to a manager in another market who was looking for staff and I got to move to a bigger market.
Conclusion: This is not meant to be an extensive list, by any means. I am sure others could sit down and come up with other helpful tips that have not been mentioned. The goal of this article is to make it easier for applicants to submit a better application and hopefully land that next great job in this great industry. If you have any suggestions or questions, please reach out and send me a note at info@ByrnesMedia.com.
I am sure that before every ratings period you remind your staff about the rules and regulations regarding what you can and cannot do both on and off the air during the ratings sweeps. Today comes a timely reminder from Numeris, as a Toronto radio station has been found to be in breach, because one of their staff reacted to a tweet during the ratings.
CFXJ-FM “Flow” Toronto has been found in breach of Rule 1 – Ratings Distortion. The breach resulted from an employee re-tweeting and responding to a tweet from a Numeris diary respondent. The respondent posted a picture of their Numeris diary with the following comment, “Best believe am filling in @FLOW93.5 on every page oh and getting paid for it”. The employee re-tweeted the respondent’s tweet with the comment ‘HECK YES!!!’.
Rule 1 states that there is no reason for a member to have contact with a respondent and as a result the Radio Rules Committee found the station in breach. The station has fully cooperated with Numeris and reviewed Numeris best practices with their staff, even before requested by the Committee.
It should be noted that this violation occurred in the diary service outside of the Toronto market and as a result the Toronto meter commercial service is unaffected.
Avoiding a Similar Violation
The Rules Committee recognizes that many radio personalities and stations use Twitter, Facebook, and similar sites to maintain contact with their listeners and that station staff can easily get caught up when engaging their audience through social media and not always stop to consider whether each interaction is appropriate. The Committee asked that Numeris let the membership know about Flow’s violation in hopes of preventing similar missteps in the future. We would also like to take this opportunity to review the rules and practical do’s and don’ts related to interactions with survey respondents.
Numeris provided the membership with a guide to survey respondent interaction in early 2015 to assist broadcasters in educating their staff. The guide provides practical advice on the application of the Rules and Regulations. A copy is attached for your reference. You can use the guide with your staff or if you prefer a Numeris Member Services Executive can make a presentation to your staff.
Remember: It is against Numeris rules for diary and meter participants to reveal their identity to anyone or to contact radio stations about their participation. And, it is against the rules for station personnel to have any contact with diary and meter participants.
If you require clarification or have any questions, please contact your Numeris Member Services Executive.
The CRTC has approved an application by Newcap Inc. for authority to acquire from Rogers Broadcasting Limited the assets of the English-language commercial radio station CHNI-FM Saint John and for a new broadcasting licence to continue the operation of the station.
The Commission also approves the applicant’s request to delete conditions of licence relating to the station’s programming. This will allow CHNI-FM to move from a News/Talk to a music format.
Finally, the Commission approves an application by Newcap to change the authorized contours of CHNI-FM.
Read more here.
Greg Diamond – ByrnesMedia
The recent flooding in Calgary/Southern Alberta (and the stations it knocked off the air) got me thinking about an article I wrote in 2007 entitled “Have A Plan”. At the time I wrote it, Hurricane Rita was churning away in the Gulf of Mexico and people feared it could be as damaging as Katrina had been a couple years prior.
Storm intensity and frequency does appear to be strengthening as the years go by. For example, “Hundred Year Floods” are no longer century events, but rather decade(s) occurrences. Also, a storm blew through Ontario the other day with a ferocity I haven’t witnessed in the almost 10 years I’ve lived here. It did a great deal of damage as it tracked north of where I am in Burlington, but we weren’t spared here, either. In fact, I saw something I hadn’t seen since I left the prairies years ago – a green cloud. If you’re ever unfortunate enough to see one, do yourself a favour and get as far away from it as you can! Those things can sometimes spawn tornados.
Now, the last example is weather, which is not the same as climate. The former is short term while the latter is long term. I add that because I’m not interested in entering into a climate change debate, but rather use this as an example as to why it’s more necessary than ever to make sure you have steps in place should something impact your station and with the knowledge that weather is just one potential cause.
Here, then, is the article from 6 years ago, which admittedly is dated as per specific events, but still seems to stand up with regards to the message. I hope you agree.
Have A Plan
Like most of us I watched the events surrounding Hurricane Katrina with a mixture of horror over the loss of life and mass destruction, anger over the slow and ineffective relief response, bewilderment that the world’s richest and most powerful country could be left so helpless, and complete and utter awe of Mother Nature. Personally, it left me asking the question – “Where was the plan?” Professionally, it left me asking the question – “Does your radio station have a plan for the unexpected?”
The “Where-were-you-when?” event of our time is without question 9/11. I think back to that day and how completely unprepared we all were for such a momentous and unforeseen tragedy. Let’s face it, though, outside of the intelligence community, who would have believed such evil even existed, let alone the death and destruction it wrought? In short, there will always be things that go unplanned. Radio (and the media as a whole) did manage to do an outstanding job even though we ended up devising the plan as we went along.
9/11, therefore, is the extreme. There are, however, many events that can and should be planned for. Things that don’t just happen “over there”, but can and do occur wherever you may live.
One of the most obvious is fire. Sure, there are laws requiring posted emergency exit routes and most stations do have specific plans for fire that deal with putting things on “auto-pilot”, etc. but how many on your staff actually know the routes and the procedures? “Hmmm, well there is that door in the back with the evacuation route on it and we have the fire procedures on the pegboard… it’s the one at the top right that’s turned yellow with age… blah, blah” I’m willing to bet good money that a pop-quiz on the subject would turn up some nasty results. This even goes for stations in buildings that practice regular fire drills. They are more than just impromptu coffee-breaks, y’know.
Beyond human safety, there’s the practical question of keeping the station on the air, should fire (or some other disaster) damage or possibly destroy the building. Are your computer files backed up and stored off-site? These include everything from accounting records to music databases. Does Engineering have a plan to broadcast from an alternate location, even if it means setting up shop in the broadcast hut? Katrina (and Rita) showed clearly which broadcasters had a contingency – they were the ones back up and running first.
Another emergency that is an unfortunate reflection on our times, but nevertheless needs to be planned for is an armed intruder. Having worked in a building that housed both radio and television operations, this was something that, while remote, was still very much a concern. Do you have a system in place to alert staff in case of such an occurrence? Does staff know to quickly (and very quietly) leave by the back door or other alternate entrance?
Weather, as illustrated all too clearly by Katrina is something that must be planned for.
ByrnesMedia has a client station in Corpus Christi, Texas. As of this writing, Hurricane Rita is set to make landfall in a day. I spoke with the station’s PD, Bert Clark, about his storm preparations. Here’s a guy who is prepared. He told me, in his laid-back southern drawl, “When we go into Hurricane-mode, we always ask for six volunteers to stay behind until the last possible moment. That’s done and the rest of the staff has already been evacuated. The music is off the air and it’s nothing but Hurricane info around the clock. We’ve also pulled the book promotion until at least next week.”
It’s understandable and expected that a station on the Gulf Coast would have a detailed hurricane protocol (Bert’s “Hurricane-mode” reference really says it all), but I must admit to being taken aback by how calm and confident he sounded. It seems having a plan makes his job easier… or maybe you just have to live there. By the way, Rita continues to curl away from Corpus Christi and thankfully it appears they will receive at most a glancing blow.
Fortunately most of us don’t contend with hurricanes, but what are the severe weather conditions and/or disaster possibilities inherent to your region? Depending on your location, contingencies need to be formulated and disseminated for everything from tornados to earthquakes.
One thing we in the Great White North have in abundance is snow. Personally, I hate the stuff, but our ByrnesMedia clients in Barrie, Ontario have taken snow and turned it into yet another reason for their considerable success. Their plan is not only very effective and efficient in its execution, but is a ratings-generator to boot.
For years the competition was considered the “must-listen” station when frequent, heavy snowstorms hit the area. Our client stations set about capturing that position by putting in place a “Snow Day” plan that was capable of immediately changing the stations’ direction from music-based to information-based when the situation arose. They coupled this with a supporting marketing campaign, which even included fridge magnets as a constant reminder of who gives the most comprehensive bus cancellations, school closures, highway/street conditions or closures, etc. It took a while, but perception shifted and now they’ve manufactured a positive benefit out of a negative Canadian weather event.
In smaller markets (and increasingly in larger markets) stations are often empty during overnights, evenings and weekends. What is your procedure for dealing with an emergency while in “VT mode?”
There was a horror story that happened in a smaller British Columbia community. An emergency existed and the mayor wanted the local station to broadcast instructions to area residents. After repeated unanswered telephone calls, the mayor went to the station only to find it deserted. He actually broke in to try and air his message!
Do yourself a favour and give the police and fire departments (and in the above case, the Mayor’s Office) a “Go To” telephone number of someone with authority like the GM or Engineer.
To assist in the planning process you may look at putting together a small committee (possibly headed by your Engineer) to think through what could potentially impact your station and how best to deal with it when or if it does. Department heads would be logical members for such a committee, but look around your workplace as there could be others uniquely suited to offer input. Once the document is completed, make sure everyone reads and knows it, and then add it to your new-employee handbook.
ByrnesMedia brings a great deal of experience to the issue of contingency planning. We would be more than happy to assist you in yours.
In the meantime, I would appreciate hearing about plans you have in place at your station, including the “why’s” and the “what’s” so we may share them with all our readers. Please email them to me at email@example.com. Together, we can help each other to “Have A Plan”.
A few months back I introduced you to Terry McArthur and Tim Morris of Mega Music Canada. Given that many stations are finalizing their budgets for the next fiscal, now would be a good time to give you a reminder of their service and how it can benefit you with your CCD expenditures.
Often cheques are simply written out to FACTOR or other traditional recipients and by no means am I saying these organizations are unworthy of additional funding. But the fact remains that there are options that exist that provide great support for developing Canadian artists that also deliver valuable marketing, promotion and branding to stations in the process. Mega Music Canada is a prime example.
Mega Music provides a turnkey solution to radio stations by providing a means to mass distribute free music via branded digital download cards. Recipients of the station’s free music are then directed to a fully customized redemption store populated with music that reflects the station’s format and playlist. Mega Music is licenced by all of the major record companies and key independents, thereby providing accessibility to the most current and in-demand Canadian artists and songs across all musical genres.
Their year end service works as follows:
For more information on how Mega Music works, you can visit their website at megadigitalmarketing.com and make sure to click on their instructional video in the “How It Works” section.
You can also contact Terry directly by emailing him at firstname.lastname@example.org or calling (403) 616-7339.
Aug 1-31 “Children’s Vision and Learning Month”: To remind people of the important role that good vision plays in a child’s ability to read and learn. Call 330-995-0718 or 1-888-268-37770, email email@example.com. Web: www.covd.org.
August 1-31 “Get Ready for Kindergarten Month”: A celebration to support a happy entry into kindergarten. Going into kindergarten is a life-changing event not only for the child, but also for parents, siblings, and educators. Call Katie Davis 914-588-2992, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Aug 1-31 “Happiness Happens Month”: 14th annual celebration to encourage people to express happiness and discourage parade-raining. Sponsored by the Secret Society of Happy People. Call 972-459-7031, email email@example.com. See www.sohp.com .
Aug 1 “Girlfriend’s Day”: Celebrate this special day by taking your girlfriends shopping, to a play, to the movies, out to eat, to the spa and/or to the park. A fun slumber party is recommended. For info call Thelma Martin 404-849-1249 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Aug 1-7 “International Clown Week”: All over the world, clowns will be clowning around for a good cause this week.
Aug 1-7 “World Breastfeeding Week”: Breastfeeding advocates, health care professionals and social services agencies focus on the importance and benefits of breastfeeding. Email the LaLeche League of Canada at email@example.com. See www.lllc.ca.
Aug 1-11 “Halifax International Busker Festival”: Halifax, NS. Street performers and artists from around the world, vaudeville nights and entertainment tent. Call 902-429-1068. See www.buskers.ca.
Aug 4 “Single Working Women’s Day”: Honouring the many single working women who do it all. Call 773-571-4199 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Aug 4 “Sisters Day”: Celebrating the spirit of sisterhood. May include biological sisters, sorority sisters, sisterly friends, etc. Call Tricia Eleogram 901-681-2145. email email@example.com. .
Aug 5 “Civic Holiday”: The first Monday in August is observed as a holiday in seven of Canada’s 10 provinces (Manitoba, New Brunswick, Northwest Territories, Ontario, Saskatchewan have Civic Holiday. It is called British Columbia Day in BC and Heritage Day in Alberta).
Aug 5-9 “Psychic Week”: Either invite a local psychic into the control room and have some fun on the air, or phone a different psychic each day “live on the air” and when they don’t answer saying “Hi [insert your name and your station name]”, hang up on them as they can’t be very good. After all, shouldn’t they know who it is?
Aug 7 “Particularly Preposterous Packaging Day”: Buy anything lately? Did you succeed in getting the darn thing open? For info call Thomas & Ruth Roy 717-279-0184. email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Aug 7 “Professional Speakers Day”: A day celebrating the consummate professionals who help people through their oratorical skills. Call Jim Barber 954-476-9252, email email@example.com. See www.professionalspeakersday.com.
Aug 7-11 “Canadian Open Old Time Fiddle Championship”: Shelburne, ON. This event features Canada’s top fiddlers in competition for over $17,000 in prizes. Call 519-925-8620 or email firstname.lastname@example.org or see www.shelburnefiddlecontest.on.ca.
Aug 9-13 “Perseid Meteor Showers”: Among the best known and most spectacular meteor showers, peaking about Aug 10-12. As many as 50-100 may be seen in a single night. Wish upon a “falling star”!
Aug 10-16 “Elvis Week”: Over 75,000 fans invade Graceland and Memphis for the hundreds of events that are organized. He died Aug 16, 1977. Call Graceland at 1-800-238-2000 or www.elvis.com Payphones near the ticket-line: 901-345-9847, 901-332-9416, 901-332-9442. Also, call the ‘Elvis’ McDonalds Restaurant (in Tupelo-his birthplace) 601-844-5505.
Aug 12 “United Nations: International Youth Day”: A day to increase public awareness of the World Programme of Action to the Year 2000 and Beyond. See www.un.org.
Aug 12 “Vinyl Record Day”: Favourite songs can bring back fond memories and Vinyl Record Day encourages celebrating these music memories with family and friends. The day also seeks to recognize the tremendous cultural influence that vinyl records and album covers have had for more than 60 years and the need to preserve that audio history. Call Gary Freilberg 888-644-4567, email gary@VinylRecordDay.org.
Aug 12-16 “Weird Contest Week”: It happens in Ocean City, New Jersey. Artistic pie eating, French fry sculpting, wet t-shirt throwing and more. They have a different contest daily, so call Mark Soifer, the PR Director of Ocean City at 609-525-9300, or email email@example.com for some great stories.
Aug 13 “International Left-Handers Day”: Since 1992, an annual worldwide day when left-handers everywhere can celebrate their sinistrality and increase public awareness of the advantages and disadvantages of being left-handed. See www.anythinglefthanded.co.uk for info.
Aug 15 “Best Friend’s Day”: Celebrate this special day by doing something fun with your best friend. Call Thema Martin 404-849-1249, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Aug 16 “Joe Miller’s Joke Day”: Joe is believed to be the first person ever to publish a joke book. Joe was a comic actor who worked at the Drury Lane Theatre and he published a 70-page book [247 Jokes] called “Joe Miller’s Jests” in England in 1739. It was revised and expanded hundreds of times and the last printing contained 1,500 jokes. A great opportunity to launch your own joke book, with money going to charity.
Aug 17 “International Geocaching Day”: To celebrate the sport of geocaching: a real-world outdoor treasure hunting game in which players search for hidden containers using a GPS-enabled device. For info, email Groundspeak, Inc. at email@example.com. See www.geocaching.com.
Aug 18 is “Bad Poetry Day”. Compose some really bad material and read it on the air, or have people call in with the worst material, or read a few lines of well-known poems [visit your local library] and have callers tell you what you’re really saying.
Aug 22 “Be An Angel Day”: Encourage people to do “one small act of service for someone” today. For more information on this day call Rev Jayne Howard-Feldman at 410-833-6912, email firstname.lastname@example.org. Web: www.earthangel4peace.com.
Aug 25 “Kiss-And-Make-Up Day”: A day to make amends and for relationships that need mending. Email Jacqueline V. Milgate for info Jacqueline825@yahoo.com.
All the key players showed up in Toronto on Thursday October 21 for the Ontario Association of Broadcasters conference and gala. It was pleasing to see so many broadcasters present, many of whom were looking to fill the conference void left by the demise of the CAB.
After the AGM there was a day of interesting sessions. While all the speakers where well worth the price of admission, the three that stood out for me were Mark Ramsey who gave a thought provoking speech about “Success in the Post-Media age. Over lunch research and futurist John Parikhal talked about “Media in Chaos” and the 5 trends that are reshaping TV, Radio and the Internet.
You can read more about this here. John is clearly not impressed with PPM, and suggested that the radio industry was being fooled into paying for measurement data that will ultimately hurt radio especially at the agency level.
Next was John Potter from the Radio Advertising Bureau. He talked about how to monetize radio and the internet. John showed lots of slides and we have provided a link so you can see all this material here.
The event finished with the presentation of “Lifetime Achievement Awards” to Jim Waters and Duff Roman.
Hat’s off to the OAB team, who worked hard to put this one day conference together. Well worth the money.