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Old 01-28-2007
jiggyjaguar jiggyjaguar is offline
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Weekly Rant{1/28/07}: How to do a successful talk show

This has been debated for along while, how do you do a successful and I will attempt to address how to do this, this week in the next installment of the rant. The rant has been off for a few weeks due to my stressful family situation. Basically my uncle has changed the locks on the house and I have to work around my mothers schedule and it has not been fun. I have in some weeks had a choice to make, do the radio show or do the columns. So the show has out weighed the columns however this week. We return for the column. I have listened to radio and have known radio people and the successfulness of talk radio is something that is not easy to do.

The format is something that most people leave at the door. The first thing has to be, format. Format is what you work off of the whole way threw. You can do several things with format, you can game plan your show here. From a format of 10:3{Basically it's 10 minutes of content and 3 minutes of commercials.} You can do a format where everything is written down and you just go from note to note. Another thing is do like Cotolo does, he has notes and just wings it. However Cotolo has been in radio since the 70's so that is advanced for someone who has done net radio or no radio period.

Content is king, you hear this all the time. Content is something that people know that;s important but they do not know what it is? What I mean by content is your show, weather your doing interviews or playing music. That is the content, like format this is so important. Look at Rush, his content is mostly phone calls and talk. Someone like a Howard Stern has things from cast and crew interaction to interviews to phone calls.

Ideas, now this is where people will get lost. Ideas for radio? HUH??? Well ideas are the things that make the other 2 work. Let's look at Opie and Anthony for an example here. Opie and Anthony have calls, interviews and then they have ideas. When they do the walkover from CBS radio to XM, they could just walk over and be done. No, they have ideas, they did giveaways one time as they did the walkover. They have done things like stunts or on the street interviews. They have the ideas to get the walkover, over to the audience.

Prep, now most show hosts do their homework, they have services now that do this for you. They write the jokes and find the interesting tidbits and they have the audio clips. All the host must do is go on the air and look like a genius. Prep is something that Michael Savage does very well. Savage goes on the air with news and stories and other things. If he has a slow period for callers or news in the world. He fills it with prep from news sources on and off line. Savage can entertain till he gets a caller or something breaks in the news cycle.

Guests and calls and Prep in general, this is something people hit and miss on all the time. First let's look at guests. I will use myself as the example. I have had on guests such as John McCarthy from the UFC. John was a great guest and filled my 15-30minute window and I hated to end the talk. This is a return guest for sure. Then you have some unsigned bands that I just can not wait to get to the 15 minute mark and cut off,they will not be back for sure. Calls, something the Des does not well and that is stall or wait for calls. I have heard Des litterly threaten to leave the air because he has no guests. You do want to beg for calls. Treat them as your shocked you have them and stick them in. Do not have your whole show depend on 1 call. Prep comes in handy here, look at Jim Rome. Rome has so much to talk about that he acts like when he gets calls. It's a treat or something else, he has enough to go without guests but he knows he will not have to wait long if he open's up the lines to calls from his listeners.

My take on successful talk shows is simple, if you do your homework and are prepared and have the talent to do it. You will be a successful host. Now if you just open the mic and hope the magic happens. You will be sorely disappointed and most likely your audience will be let down as well. It's not a hard thing to do, a monkey could do talk radio and believe me I think a monkey would be better than some hosts I have heard on the air.

-The Jiggy Jaguar-

Editors Note
The Jiggy Jaguar Show can be heard Monday Nights on

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