So, you’ve done it! You’ve signed up for Blog Talk Radio or Live 365 and you’re staring at that one or two hour block of airtime! You know it’s going to happen, you know you’ll become the next Rush Limbaugh or Alan Colmes or even Glenn Beck! You have that headset or a real mic and maybe even have a telco or mixing board! You may have even bought some airtime on a small rural AM radio station and asked the local pizza shop to sponsor you!
All that work, and all the practice, and airtime are staring back at you from your schedule.
Did you think about who you’d have on as a guest for your debut, or for the shows you planned to have forever after? Maybe not or maybe you thought you’d ask your uncle who runs a car dealership (you should be so lucky!) or the local high school football coach to visit and talk with you! Maybe you don’t want those people, though if you have a local program, they’d always be good. Maybe you really want to jump into Limbaugh territory and reach out and touch – at least by phone – the stars you see on cable news or the movies!
You can do it! At least you’ve already shown some desire to do it, and that’s the first thing you need. Another thing you’ll need is some strength to endure, because there’s a good chance you’ll be your own producer for the show or perhaps the best producer the show has.
From experience, you’ll have to remember this: the only difference between some big-time journalists and you is the desire to pick up the phone or send an email to the big newsmakers. Many people who just started their own radio shows have a mental stumbling block. They don’t think Hollywood stars or newsmakers would ever even think of “guesting” on a local show. Well, if you listen to local radio, you’ll know that simply isn’t true, and it doesn’t have to be true for you doing online radio or local pay-to-broadcast shows either!
It also doesn’t take magic or expensive books and training seminars, at least to get started. Much of what you’ll learn as your own producer, you’ll learn by trial and error. It also helps to have someone in the broadcasting business that might give you some tips now and again. But really, all you have to do it decide on someone you’d like to have as a guest, or maybe a handful of possibilities, and then call them.
That, of course, means you’ll have to do some detective work and track them down or track down their agents. You can call newspapers and very politely ask local reporters if they’d help. Sometimes, they will. Reach out to friends on social networking sites like facebook or twitter. You’ll have to work on expanding those networks first so that actually works, but if you’ve got a few hundred “friends” or “followers” it can be easy to reach out there and use the “five degrees of Kevin Bacon” approach that states essentially we’re all just five friends (who know a friend who knows a friend, etc) from knowing actor Kevin Bacon.
Above all, shoot high and don’t give up, because you will eventually get that hard-to-find guest or star you’d like to have as a guest. It’ll take work, but it’ll make your show more interesting, and the stars can bring some “marquee value” to a struggling or start up show in a small venue.