A List of 8 Careers in Radio
Class orientations are always a big to do here in Cincinnati. Meeting new students, seeing their excitement, sensing the nervousness of beginning a new chapter in your life, it doesn’t matter what the age, the first day of school is a big deal.
We will always ask a new student, “Are you more interested in Television or Radio?”
For each of us who have worked within this industry, we know this is a loaded question. Sure you work in “tv” or “radio”, but what do you do?
The majority of students will want to either be in front of the camera or behind the mic. It isn’t until they get into the meat of the program that the realization of how many different careers are available truly starts to set in.
If you’ve at least decided you want to attend a broadcasting college or school, fantastic, the first hurdle has been cleared. Deciding where you are going to land, well, that’s a horse of a different color.
Here is a list of (8) career choices for radio.
They’re listed in no particular order. Keep in mind, if you work in a smaller market, you may the person who handles four or five of the jobs listed. The more responsibility you handle, the more marketable you become.
#1 Program Director
is the person who develops or selects some or all of the content that will be broadcast. Their selections are based upon understanding the demographic of their listeners. They manage everyone on the programming side and act as a liaison with the sales department and the General Manager to ensure radio promotions are executed with revenue generating success.
#2 Operations Manager/ General Manager
hires and trains all employees. They oversee the sales and accounting departments. They usually have a sales, or business management background, and handle the contract issues of the air personalities.
Radio Engineers are responsible for running the electronics that keep radio stations on the air. This includes maintaining equipment inside the station, as well as the transmitters, the broadcast towers and any cabling that feeds them. Their specialized knowledge is also needed to ensure that the station is in compliance with federal and local regulations about radio frequency interference.
#4 Imaging Director
Responsible for creating all the jingles, sweepers, liners, and legal id’s that define what the image of the station is. They also write and produce the majority of the commercials that are aired on a particular station, always keeping the core values of the station and the demographic they are targeting.
You sell the airtime, the promotions, and just about anything you can dream up (if the GM will let ya). If you have a knack for getting people on the phone and closing deals - you might want to give this position a look. Some of the best sales people started off on-air and because they had a working knowledge of the air schedules and content, they can put together some of the best promotions for advertisers. Working in conjunction with position #8 of course ;)
Every cluster is different, but if you are considered the fulltime news/tx person, you’ll probably work a split shift. You’re there in the morning with the Morning Show, and come back during Afternoon Drive. You can expect that you will execute several live news breaks per hour, plus a traffic update at least every ten minutes.
#7 Morning Show Producer
You book the guests, research the topics, execute the contests, run the board, edit show content for air, create morning show imaging, and keep the talent on time and on point. You are also the direct line to the PD.
#8 Promotions Director/Coordinator
You’re the person who comes up with all those great little giveaways and contests. You work directly with the PD and the sales department to get more bang for the advertising buck by coming up with creative ways to give away 800 cases of Frank’s Hot Sauce in July. You think outside the proverbial box and people love your quirky view of the world. It’s a high pressure position, but for someone who is organized and highly creative, it’s a behind the scenes position that has a big payoff in the fact that you are responsible for the overall success of a station when the promotion is executed with success.
So…which one are you?