Frost Advisory #502 – It’s Our Time To Be A Good Neighbor

Imagine this. Your radio station goes away. Protests flood social media. People start petitions to get your station back. And get this; the people who start this movement are people who DON’T even listen to your station.

In the book “Deep and Wide,” Andy Stanley shares his hope that the church’s presence be good for the community, even viewed that way by those who don’t attend. He shares his desire that the church is seen as such a good neighbor that people would miss it if wasn’t there.

There is no better time than this current coronavirus pandemic for Christian radio to be a good neighbor.

In his book “Know What You’re For,” Jeff Henderson shares that most businesses see their customers as fans in the stands rooting for the business. His suggestion is transformative. Imagine your customers are on the field and you’re rooting for them.

We’re really good at talking about ourselves, how “real” we are, and what we want from our listeners (“help keep us on the air”), but frankly, we often fall short in demonstrating what our listeners and our local community mean to us.

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Tommy Kramer Coaching Tip #355 – Finding the Right Volume

This may seem academic, but I’m hearing a lot of that “bull-horn” delivery lately.

Finding the right volume isn’t usually something you just “get.”  It takes exploring different mic techniques, and learning as much as you can about your vocal “instrument.”  Being able to “caress” something, vocally, is important.  We’re voice actors, not just “personalities.”

Voice trackers, in particular, often sound totally out of touch with the music, because they don’t think about volume and intonation.  Or, as the great voice coach Marice Tobias calls it, “noticing” a word, rather than the typical instruction to “inflect” or “sell” it.

Let me try to quantify this for you:

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Frost Advisory #501 – This Is What We Practice For

I’ve heard some remarkable radio this past week.

I’ve heard stories of the helpers, whether those in hospitals and research labs, or those restocking grocery shelves late at night, or those knocking on a neighbor’s door to see if they are okay. (Our neighbor’s daughter is quarantined because she flew in from London).

I’ve heard radio stations stop what they usually do to put their “flag in the ground” and share faith in inspiring and practical ways.

“When the story of COVID-19 is just a story we tell let’s make sure our stories are stories worth telling.”

Andy Stanley

I’ve heard fresh perspectives in contrast to what is heard from mainstream media, perspectives that can actually be helpful to people.

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Tommy Kramer Coaching Tip #354 – You Can’t MAKE Something Matter

Content, Content, wherefore art thou?

Minutia, “filler” items, stupid lists like “12 things you can do with chili peppers,” reading vapid social media postings that a lot of people’s own relatives don’t care about.  Why are we settling for this?

I probably get asked about Content and Show Prep more than anything else.  It’s impossible to tell you what will be good Content tomorrow, but I do know the principle that makes it easier – and FAST:

You can’t MAKE something matter.  It either does, or it doesn’t.  If it doesn’t, blathering on about it or making stupid jokes to try and “dress it up” won’t work.

So how do you know what matters?  KNOW YOUR LISTENER.  Not some cold, hard, station profile; but who he or she is, what they look like, where they came from, what their lives are like.  The more you can put yourself in the listener’s shoes, the easier it is to serve subjects up like Bobby Flay fixing breakfast.

Hold your feet to the fire on NOT doing ANYTHING that doesn’t matter.  It’s magic.

Frost Advisory #500 – Do You Know Where Your Children Are?

When I was growing up there was a television station in Dallas that kicked off the 10 o’clock news with, “It’s ten o’clock. Do you know where your children are?”

Despite being an ABC affiliate, which was the third place network in those days, Channel 8 always dominated the news ratings. Many of their news anchors were on Channel 8 for decades!


Trust is not impulsive. Trust can only be built over time. Trust is built with a mindset of a farmer, not that of a hunter. Plant, tend, plow, fertilize, weed, repeat. Build relationships and be there when they need you.

What is your station’s role while the Coronavirus is in the headlines and impacting your listeners’ daily lives?

Consider three things:

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Tommy Kramer Coaching Tip #353 – No Talk, No Magic

In this era of voice trackers in one or more dayparts, multiple responsibilities that take time, etc. it’s not unusual for me to see stations where the morning team may have never even met, say, the evening air talent.

Although this might not seem to be an area for a talent coach to work on, it really is.  I think it’s essential for all the people on the air staff to know each other, communicate with each other, and share with each other.

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Frost Advisory #499 – How To Create Boring Radio

It’s simple. There are only two things in the design of a music radio station. There’s the music, and then there is everything that isn’t music. 💡

In the design of a successful station the music serves one purpose. The “everything but music” is designed for another purpose.


How a program director designs each will have a transformative impact on the station’s success.

Let’s talk about the everything else.

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Tommy Kramer Coaching Tip #352 – Being Natural Isn’t Enough

One of the main things I deal with as a coach is getting air talent to sound more natural.  Especially to younger demos, sounding “like a disc jockey” isn’t what they want to hear.  But that’s not all there is to it.

There are lessons everywhere, so here’s one with a visual aid.  It’s a YouTube clip of Carole King and James Taylor doing her song “Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow”

Two “old pros” pretty much knocking it out of the park, with what I think may be the best song ever written about teenage girl angst and hopes.  King and Taylor seem totally relaxed and the performance feels very natural, but it’s also EXPERTLY nuanced.

People work hard to attain that level in both of those areas.  So remember, it’s not enough to just be natural; there also has to be attention to Performance.

Frost Advisory #498 – A Programming Lesson From Leap Year Day

So, what did you do with your extra time on the extra day?

“How did it get so late so soon?
It’s night before it’s afternoon.
December is here before it’s June.
My goodness how the time has flewn.
How did it get so late so soon?”

Dr. Seuss

In our business time IS what we do. We sell time, we fill time, we announce the time. Whether our vernacular is “time spent listening” or “average weekly time exposed” we are in the business of time.

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