There’s a lot of different styles of communication in Christian radio. We have those that lean toward preaching, we have those that want to let the music be the message, we have those that focus on encouragement, and we have personalities that live life from a Bible centered worldview.
How do we communicate Christ to a culture that thinks it already knows all about Jesus?
We tell stories. We reflect his light. We share our heart. We invite people into community and we intentionally encourage.
God’s word does not return void. Rethink the content that your’re putting into your showprep this week. Intentionally frame the stories with heart, characters and encouragement.
Fame the heart of the artists you play. Tell stories with a point. Actually listen to the words in the music you’re playing.
Think about what a Christ centered world view actually is. Share what you’re learning. Share what you’ve been reading.
Choose to be an encourager. Think about how your pastor does sermon illustrations. He generally starts with a story that relates to someone in his audience and he brings out a spiritual truth that’s related to it.
Ask callers or artists what they are learning, what they are reading & what their through process is in raising kids in this crazy world. Let them share God’s truths from their life.
Quote the people of the Bible directly. Instead of saying, “The Bible says….. or reading off a long verse and reference, try this to make it more personal to someone who doesn’t know much about the Bible:
“Paul explained grace in Romans 8 – he said if God is for us, who can be against us….”
“When King David wrote Psalm 119, he said…”
“In Paul’s letter to the Corinthians, he explained….”
“Jesus explained the difference between work and grace in Matthew 5. He said…..”
When you want to communicate God’s truth in your show, lead with encouragement. Speak to who your listener can become with a personal relationship with Jesus. Speak to the unique giftings, talents and raw potential you see. You’ve been given a circle of influence, so intentionally speak life into those people and they will come back tomorrow even if they don’t know Jesus….yet. – Scott Herrold
“God, how do you want to use me to connect this company/ministry vision to our listeners?”
“God, how should the original vision of our founder come through in my show & how can I do a better job sharing that?”
Pray a dangerous prayer and watch how God works through your show…
“Even in literature and art, no man who bothers about originality will ever be original: whereas if you simply try to tell the truth (without caring twopence how often it has been told before) you will, nine times out of ten, become original without ever having noticed it.” –C. S. Lewis
Tell the truth, share your world view, speak from your heart & be more connective with people. That’s how creativity builds into innovation. We’re always trying to push the envelop to be creative & innovative with our radio stations & shows. If we think of new ways to include people and help facilitate community, we will always add innovation to what we do.
When you can use media to help facilitate community, you innovate.
When you use technology to grow your relationships deeper with listeners, you innovate.
When you make people a priority, you innovate.
When you create fresh distribution channels for your show, you innovate.
When you give your listeners new opportunities to connect with your people and your brand, you innovate.
When you love your listeners, you innovate.
When you connect your web, your apps & your radio to people, you innovate.
When you encourage your listeners, you innovate.
When you give your listeners an experience, you always innovate.
And if necessary use words…..
I think we can all learn a little about storytelling from this video.
Here’s an 45 min brainstorm call from some of our CreativeCardio.com members sharing Christmas ideas for your show! Grab a pen so you can write down all these ideas! It’s well worth your time. Trust me!
This year I want to help my listeners better comprehend the reason “why” our radio station exists. Our “why” is different than every other media option our listeners engage with. I want to help our listeners visualize where we’re going. I want to better frame the WHY behind what we are doing.
I think about the way Dr. Martin Luther King shared his dream for what our country could look like. He didn’t say “we need to do this” or “you need to change” or “people need to stop doing.” He simply cast a dream and invited America into it.
Some of the most compelling pledge drive breaks actually cast vision for the listener. Here’s a few ideas you could use to share a dream for what God could do through your radio community.
I want to be a part of something that is really changing lives!
I want to be part of something that encourages others!
I want to be part of something that challenges our kids!
I want to be a part of the solution and not the problem!
I want to see a revival in our city!
I want to be part of shifting our culture!
I want to encourage the people around me!
I want to challenge the next generation to really step up & shine a light for God!
I want to see God do even more in this city!
I want to be a part of real life change!
I want to see my money go farther than my own resource!
I want to help dream up solutions!
I want to build into my neighborhood!
I want to help make this city a better place to live!
I want to see more Christians doing real art!
I want to build something that will be here for my children!
I want to connect with Christian music on my iPhone!
I want to reach people in cities that don’t have Christian radio!
I want to reach people in some of the darkest countries of the world with the hope of Jesus!
I want to help bring the churches together in this city!
I want to see my church grow!
I want to be a light in the darkness
I want to help be the ‘shift’ that our culture needs!
I want to fuel something that others are also investing in!
Our desire is to share the hope of Jesus with even more people this year!
We desire to bring even more family friendly events to this city!
We want to connect more people with local churches!
We want to encourage even more people to make God’s world their moral and spiritual foundation!
We believe the local church is the hope of the world!
We want to challenge your kids to life boldly for Christ!
We desire to see a new generation of children growing up with Christian music!
We want to tackle the the most challenging social issues in our city!
We want to see our kids singing worship music in the car!
We want to help churches thrive in our city!
We want to give even more people a place to plug in with!
We want to share news and information from a Christian perspective!
We want to connect you into a community that challenges your relationship with God and with other Christians!
When I give, I feel like I’m part of the solution!
When I live generously, money doesn’t have any control over my life!
When I give, my money helps the less fortunate right here in town!
When I give, I’m helping to share the hope of Jesus with people who are struggling!
I’m investing in the life change that’s going on behind this radio ministry!
I want to see hearts softened in our community!
I love the way God’s working inside our city!
I want to be a problem solver. I want to be an organizer. I want to be a world changer!
I want my kids growing up with Christian music because I believe in the power behind it!
I want to invest in the ministry behind this radio station!
Let’s rethink the way we do news on our show. Let’s start by investing in storytelling. Rather than give breaking information, let’s tell better stories. News can be divisive, but stories can be encouraging. News can divide and stories can bring listeners together. News has victims and stories have characters who overcome adversity.
If we do anything that is reoccurring on our show, we should have a well through out strategy for it. I think the key to making news connect is embracing your listener’s point of view . We’re not investigative reporters. We are personalities. Let’s use our strength as a way to tell better stories.
Are we doing news as a topic starter? Are we doing news to connect with trending/what’s on our listeners mind this morning?
Are we doing news to share a local point of view?
Are we sharing news from a Christian point of view?
Are we sharing news in order to be a breaking news source?
Are we sharing news as a source of faith stories?
Are we a consistent good news source to the encouragement that our listeners are hoping we can be?
Want a sample of what we do with idea starters for your show?
We post a list of examples each week on the Christian Music Broadcasters site!
The key to showprep is knowing your strategy. Knowing what you are going to do on your show before you walk into the studio. It’s finding a fresh mix of content that’s really going to connect with your audience. Knowing where and when to use content it is part of the strategy.
Here’s a few ideas that can help refresh your showprep strategy. Take these raw ideas and make them personal for you!
- Plot out your show by quarter hour. (Find ONE great element of content for each quarter hour and plot out the show that way)
- Prep buckets. Identify 4-5 subjects you know your listener values everyday. Use these subjects as your prep buckets. (Faith, family, relationships, fun, music, adventure, fitness, finance, parenting, hope, marriage, entertainment etc) Each day, look for stories to put in your prep buckets, that way you an rotate through content. Prep buckets challenge you to build a rotation for the subjects your listener cares about most. It’s like strategy by content category.
Themes. When you break up your topics hour by hour, you can frame your strategy like a theme. IE: Rotate the heart content with the funny content. Rotate the human interest with the spiritual and so forth. This will give a different texture to each hour in your show. What are 3 or 4 themes that I want to highlight today instead of the typical news stories/bits/call in discussions? If I start with 3-4 themes they work as the outline. Then I can steer the discussion and lead the show rather than the time just controlling me.
- Top three. Find 3 trending stories your listener might share with her friends. Find 3 encouraging stories that make you smile. Find 3 Bible verses or spiritual themes that feel relevant today. Find 3 stories that will make your laugh. Start your show outline with your top 3 in mind.
- Point of view diversity. This strategy is about how you will share the content you found. Look at all the stories and prep you’ve collected. Think about the different ways to tell the story differently than you did yesterday. Am I sharing this story in the third person or in the first person perspective? How can I build this story into a fun call in discussion or a Facebook live video? Can I take this raw story and add nostalgic music/pop culture clips/and lots of verbs to help create emotion or make it theatrical? Am I focusing on storytelling? (What’s my beginning, middle & end? How do I better highlight the characters in this story? Am I talking about this story with another personality from my station in order to get two different points of view? Look at today’s stories and think about how to shift the point of view and change the texture.
We want to help connect you with other creative personalities! We hope this helps your personal growth as you develop as an air talent!