There has never been a better time than now to be in radio production

In the early 90's after working within the audio department of a large television company, I became excited after realising where audio within radio could be headed. Back then TV had always been great with pictures, but had lacked the pizazz and 'kick' that people like Jeff Thomas and Phil Lentz were creating within radio.

What I was excited about was the opportunity that one day radio audio departments would become more involved in mixing to vision.

Fast forward twenty years and I now see how wrong I was, and yet I am more excited than ever. Let me explain why …

To be able to record, edit and mix audio for radio is a minimum requirement.

In today's modern radio production studio, you need to be knowledgeable in creating promos and commercials, mixing audio for television, for the internet, for outside broadcast, for boardroom presentations, and even a speedy on-hold message for that pesky direct rep. You must be confident to pitch ideas to clients in studio, you should be a strong leader, a director of talent, a decisive but open minded creative filter, a mentor to younger students of the craft, and most importantly, you must be in a constant and never ending quest to improve, learn and grow your talent. Why?

Because we are in the most exciting time in our industry.
A period that will see the great radio production people shine.

Mobile technology, Digital Radio and Internet Radio has been added to the knowledge base of all radio production people. An awareness of these mediums is not enough. Our roles are to understand and educate our respective teams of the capabilities and the opportunities for increased revenue opportunities with clients, as well as how our respective station promotional and content departments can utilise these technologies to spearhead radio services beyond the digital possibilities of our television and print counterparts.

For example; Meta-data is the golden egg within each audio cart play-out system. The meta-data technology exists right now to not only throw an album cover picture and some scrolling text across the screen. But to also embed meta-data that turns radio spots into smart spots linking your production to client promotional offers, interactive client messages, the APRA details, even the script or voiceover details. In fact you can customise to link to whatever details or promotional angle you choose.

So think this way, a promo for a new Pink concert is on air and the end user receives a message that pre-release tickets are on sale exclusively for them as a listener to your station, plus a commission could be struck with the ticket promoter to receive revenue from that purchase. Or a more practical administrative option … all your APRA details are entered into the cart when it is created and every time it plays it is logged and ready for your APRA report. Or better still, sent directly to APRA/AMCOS!

Production people should become the ‘gate-keepers’ to controlling the biggest innovation in radio … hybrid streaming radio apps for mobiles, the car dash and wireless enabled smart radios.

My mentor told me once that, “You don't get paid for the hour, you get paid for the 'value' you bring to the hour.”

What is important for Radio Production people right now, is to be creating 'value'.

The skill set required to be at the top of your game within the radio production rooms around Australia is forever growing and changing, don't be lazy and get left behind.

Daryl Missen has won many international radio awards and has over 20 years experience in audio production for radio, television, cinema. He is a Sound Designer for MIX 101.1 Melbourne. For more Radio production tips and news –

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