There are more than 1,500 talk show stations around the United States. Each station has approximately ten talk show hosts, each with their own format and area of interest. You can determine their focus by listening on the Internet to the show.
Each show has a producer who you’ll get to talk with. They will actually be doing a preliminary interview of you as you’re talking about an interview. They’ll want to know you are spontaneous and can handle pressure under fire. That is the main reason you can not allow anyone else to arrange your radio interviews. The producers must talk with you personally.
There are many ways of telling whether or not a radio station is going to be a good fit for you and your book. Here are 12 guidelines for you to rely on.
1. Wherever you live you’ll find the majority of local radio stations are banded together into a single network for cost-effectiveness. The good news for you is once you’ve been on one of the radio programs; they can refer you to many others;
2. Identify the controlling network. There are stations which are dominant and you’ll want to know which ones they are to work with the right ones;
3. Visit the corporate website containing links to all subsidiaries. Get to know which one is the main station that controls the other stations;
4. Pick out those stations with a 50 to 500 mile range. This can be determined by the wattage of a station. A 10,000 watt station has 10% of the reach of a 100,000 watt station. But you’ll need to build up to the level of the larger stations. Start small, gain your confidence and experience and in no time you’ll be ready for the big time;
5. Visit each of the stations websites. You’ll want to know the station format and it is a good fit for your book concept. The talk show host builds an audience based on their typical topic. A political show will not have a following for the Law of Attraction. Be sure you know what the typical conversations consist of and be prepared to be somewhat adaptable;
6. Scan the daily programming schedules. The stations will list what each of the shows will be focused on. They will list the future show titles;
7. Highlight those programs that might identify with the topic of your book. Look to see which shows might be in alignment of your topic;
8. Note the host’s name. You’ll want to make sure you mention the talk show host by name at least every five minutes or so;
9. Call the producer with a well-practiced request for a live interview. State your case for being interviewed. Prepare your questions and provide them with your hook to gain the interest of their listening audience;
10. Follow up your booking gig with a confirmation email. It’s important to make sure you stay in communication with the producer before and after your interview;
11. Double check the week before your interview to make sure the producer has your questions handy and is broadcasting your hook;
12. You know your topic inside out; speak with assurance and you’ll get your interview; maybe not straightaway but, if you sell yourself and your project professionally, you’ll be logged into and up-and-coming slot in the station scheduling.
It makes sense to have your bio, picture, questions, and your hook listed on your website on a media tab. The more you can do to make the talk show host look prepared, the better. Make it easy for the producer and the talk show host to find the details of your interview!
Always give the talk show host the leeway to be in control. Even though it is your interview, it is their show. Don’t use industry jargon; make it easy for the audience to follow along with your concepts.
Be sure to post every interview on your site with a picture of the talk show host and the audio of the program. Once you have a few program examples on your site it will make it easier for other producers to book you for future interviews.