Open letter to Programmers and Wanna-be’s
This was an email message that was sent to CJMP programmers; I was asked to reproduce it as a blog post, so here it is. It also exists as a permanent page on our site here. Cheers- Giovanni.
The issue of promoting our programs comes up a lot and there are some opposing views we have heard such as:
I hate promotion; I’m not selling something (I do that in my ‘real life’)
I already prep and do my show…
I only want my friends, know about my show so they can listen, and I don’t care who else knows about my show..
I’m just starting out and I am waiting for my style to develop before promoting my show… I’m embarrassed, etc.
All valid reactions, but here are some things to keep in mind.
Radio programs are our main ‘product’;
If we don’t promote our programs, we won’t attract new listeners.
If we don’t attract new listeners, we also won’t attract new members or sponsors or advertisers, which help pay for the infrastructure that makes our programs and the station itself even possible.
A lack of listenership will affect everthing we do… especially when it comes to fall fundraising period when we’ll be asking people to support the programs they love (like yours!) by donating money to the station. They need to know about your show to listen to it, and then to support it.
It takes time to develop listenership and the sooner we start developing this relationship, the better.
So… it is our privilege to not only to show up and create quality programming, but to promote our programs using some (or all– although there are many) of these methods:
‘Shout out’ and talk up other CJMP programs during your live show — you choose which and when (they in turn may do the same for you — see schedule link on our site’s front page– side rail)
Make audio show promos for your program (30 seconds exactly, with 2 seconds no-talking at the end, and one or so at the beginning)– need help? we have people who can help– just ask– Karen can lead you to good things promo: email@example.com — this is a requirement for all on-air shows, by the way.
Get your own Facebook page for your program; linking it to the CJMP facebook page;
Set up your own blog for your show (it’s free and easy– and we can help with that)www.wordpress.com;
Make up posters (see here for guidelines and info: http://old.cjmp.ca/get-a-show/program-supports/ ) or ask our POM team (firstname.lastname@example.org) to help make a poster for your show;
Make sure your program is on our CJMP site (see here: http://old.cjmp.ca/our-programs/ ) on our schedule (see our site’s side panel) and that there are links to more info. and that they work;
Encourage listeners to call in, email or check your Facebook/blog/website page; engage the community (even if they don’t call in, at least they know they can) Use our own CJMP page as well (want to be an admin? email me)
Bring special guests in — people will tell their friends to listen in as well if they are on the show, and this will increase your listener-ship if these new listeners stick around because they love what they hear. If the guest is part of a community group this increases the scope even more— depends on the show, of course… Do fill the guest in on what your show is about and what they may/may not say (eg. watch the language, slander, etc)
Promote our ‘curated’ (i.e. not-live) podcasts and selectively automated schedule as well– see the orange and blue sections here: http://old.cjmp.ca/wp-content/uploads/2011/07/cjmpscheduleJuly20111.pdf
Sponsorships are a great way to increase listenership and also to raise funds– we encourage programmers to at least keep an eye out for potential sponsors. See here for more info:http://old.cjmp.ca/advertise/sponsorships-ads-and-psas/
Consider publicizing your playlist on a webpage that you manage– we can link to that page from your CJMP profile on the CJMP site (http://old.cjmp.ca)
Read our Community Announcements (in clip board)– non-profit organizations send us free live-only ads that DJs may selectively read out (you choose when/which)– and they will listen in to hear their “shout out”– this equals more listeners, more potential members and more potential advertisers/sponsors
Play your chosen pre-recorded PSA on the :30 mark of your show; this shows community involvement and is part of our license requirement to the CRTC
Encourage listeners to become sustaining members: http://old.cjmp.ca/support-us/sustain-us/
Point people to our live streaming (http://old.cjmp.ca/listen)– the whole world can be your audience!
Remind people on the half hour that they are listening to CJMP community radio: a non-profit and local media society and that they can have a voice as well– and get their own program too: http://old.cjmp.ca/get-a-show/
We have lots of people working behind the scene (most are volunteers!) to make our station the best it can be and we want people to hear how great we think your show is, and make all your efforts worthwhile in this collective push toward excellence.