Why Some Morning Shows Work and Others Don’t

Morning shows tend to be the face of the station. For decades we’ve woken up to our favorite group or duo, and got ready for the day with them. Morning shows are featured in tons of tv shows and movies. There are even movies about morning shows! What makes this particular daypart so appealing?

We could talk about this for hours, so let’s dive into one aspect. The chemistry. I’m not talking about a romantic chemistry…there needs to be some sort of relationship between the two, or group. It needs to sound, to the listener, like you actually like the person sitting across from you. If you don’t have that initial spark, it will translate across the airwaves to the listener.  If it sounds too robotic or scripted because you guys can’t have an actual conversation, the show will bomb. I’ve worked with a few different shows; one where my partner and I were completely different and management thought it would be good on air, and one where my partner and I were already best friends and it made for GREAT radio. How do you turn the first into the latter?

If you discover you and your partner aren’t great in the chemistry department, there are ways to fix it. One is to do some marriage tests. I know, sounds sooo weird since you aren’t married. However, these are designed to get to know each other again, and for you, it’s simply just getting to know each other. Go to lunch and take these with you and just ask each other some of the questions. Obviously, a lot of the questions are geared towards relationships so skip the intimate ones. Here’s an example of a questionnaire, there are a lot of these out there so you can find a list of your own that better suits you.

Another great way to get to know your partner and develop a friendship is to just hang out! Go to a baseball game or bowling. Get in a relaxed and fun atmosphere. Figure you what makes each other laugh. This is also great content for your show. Hit up a local joint that you can talk about on air. I encourage you to really try to understand each other on another level than just coworkers if you want your show to sound authentic.

People can pick up on the fakeness or forced happiness on air. It sounds stale and no one wants to wake up to something like that. Listeners tune in because they hear a duo or group having FUN. It sets the tone for their day! When they hear you laughing or talking about something that happened to you, they feel like they are in the studio with you, and friends with you. It’s so important to radiate joy during your morning show. Some of your listeners turn on your show to slip away from life. To have a moment of happiness in maybe a stressful day. Maybe they are on their way to a job they hate and you are the good part of their morning. Maybe they just got off third shift and just wiped, you are the ones keeping them awake on their way home. They could be having a really rough time, and you are the break in their sadness. Being light and happy on air, and having a true relationship with your partner or group can be the rise or downfall of your show. Take the time to develop and nurture your connection. It will make radio much easier for you.

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