So, which do you choose today?
You can be interesting, but you’ve got to be really interesting. This usually aligns with being informative, but you can be informative without being interesting. For instance, giving me the average birth weight of mollusks in Monterey Bay is informative, but completely uninteresting.
You can be funny, but you’ve got to be genuinely funny and if you try too hard to be funny and fail, that is often worse than not trying to be funny at all. Few air talents are funny enough to be funny every time they need to be.
You could be highly personal, allowing listeners to live vicariously through your daily life experiences. To do this well usually means you need to be in the sweet spot of your target demo.
You have to be relevant. Above all else, if what you’re saying isn’t relevant to my life, I will not listen, or if I do, I will not remember what I heard. Nor will I make listening to you a habit.
You need to be topical and sensitive to the news surrounding the hours of your show. It wouldn’t be right to be cracking jokes after a mass shooting or any other tragedy. You have to match the tone of your material to what’s going on in your town.
You need to be unique. You need to sound like no one else, or bring a unique perspective to topics that everyone else is also talking about on their stations.
You need to be memorable and that is most easily accomplished when you are knock down funny, when you trigger the human fear and/or outrage response, or when you are deeply emotional.
It’s harder than ever — and, at the same time easier than ever — to produce content.
Your listeners have access to every source you do. That’s why your unique perspective on the stuff of life that we all deal with daily is the most important thing you can bring into the studio with you.
These are your options if you want to be more than just another voice in the background.
And if you don’t mind being a voice in the background, be prepared for another line of work because your job will soon be filled by AI or voice-tracking.