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So You Want to Be In Radio?

August 14, 1992|R. DANIEL FOSTER

Producing and hosting your own radio show is easier than you think. Whether you want to proselytize for that new religion you've invented or just gab for an hour knowing that someone out there is listening, accessing the airwaves can be fun and profitable.

Area radio sales representatives will, in fact, hold your hand through the experience. Here's what you can expect them to provide, usually at no extra charge: familiarization with FCC regulations, help in operating switchboards, use of engineers, producing and scripting commercials, use of announcers in recording your show or commercials, access to sound effects and promotional spots if your show becomes popular.

First you have to sell your idea. The following tips may help:

* Develop a proposal for your show that includes a demonstration tape and business plan detailing possible topics and sponsors you have secured or plan to secure.

* Prior radio experience helps, but is not necessary. If you've hosted a show or have been interviewed on radio, include those tapes in your package. Radio management is most interested in how you handle yourself on the air.

* If you're not adept at sales, consider hiring a salesperson, paid on a commission basis, to secure sponsors. You may also need to hire help to screen incoming calls while you're on the air, although stations sometimes provide this service. Ask radio sales representatives for a scale of advertising rates. Begin at a competitive price; you can raise rates as your show becomes popular.

* Bargain for the cost of your air time. Deals can be struck for shows that air at unpopular times, or for shows that are repeated during the week. Note that as your show grows in popularity, you'll have more weight and bargaining power with the station.

KIEV 870-AM, 5900 San Fernando Road, Glendale, sells 80% of its talk format programming as brokerage shows. Costs range from $100 for five minutes after dusk to about $1,500 for one daytime hour; fees vary depending on the day, time and popularity of the show. KIEV also sells 15-minute and half-hour time slots. (818) 244-8483.

KWNK 670-AM, 6633 Fallbrook Ave., Suite 700 in the Fallbrook Mall, West Hills, with a talk format, sets aside 30% of its air time for brokerage shows, selling half-hour and one-hour programs. Fees are $375 for one half-hour, $500 for one hour. The station requires a 13-week commitment from hosts.

Air time, in 15-minute and half-hour interview segments, can also be purchased on the station's "Morning Magazine" show that airs 6 to 9 a.m. Monday through Friday. (818) 887-1855.

KGIL 1260-AM, 14800 Lassen St., Mission Hills, offers 5% of its talk format as brokerage shows. Sells half-hour and one-hour time slots. Call for cost schedule. (818) 894-9191.

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