Tommy Kramer Coaching Tip #575: How the Jack Benny Format Applies to Radio Today

If you’ve never heard it (or seen his TV show on some classic channel), the Jack Benny Show was groundbreaking in its day. And it still has a basic formula that I assure you WILL work today: he made everyone else the star.

Whether it was his announcer, his wife, a singer, a guest, or any other cast member, Benny was quite willing to take a back seat. He never minded being the butt of a joke, overshadowed by another comedian, or made to look like a fool.

The result? People LOVED HIM. Yes, him. They liked the other cast members, too, but people felt sympathy for – or empathy with – him.

I can’t stress how important this was in my own career, and how many people I’ve coached to use this technique. It always works.

Put your ego aside.

The more you willingly give the spotlight to someone else, the more people will like you.

One caution: In a team show environment, remember that the “side people” can’t completely take over the show. The headliner still has to shine, too.

– – – – – – –
Tommy Kramer
Talent Coach
214-632-3090 (mobile)
e-mail: coachtommykramer@gmail.com
Member, Texas Radio Hall of Fame
© 2024 by Tommy Kramer. All rights reserved.

Tommy Kramer Coaching Tip #574: The Best Phone Call Tip

Music format or Talk format – it doesn’t matter. There’s a real art to creating a phone call “culture” – which I’ve written some about before. But the actual taking of a phone call (or airing one live) can often be messed up in the first few seconds.

Here’s how to avoid that, in two easy steps:

  1. Greet (or bring on) the caller.
  2. Then SHUT UP.

From that beginning, you can then move on to wherever the call needs to go.

Here’s why I recommend this – most phone calls go awry when I can’t hear what the caller is saying. Two people talking at the same time (or one being buried by the phone interface) is unlistenable.

Note: I strongly urge shows in music formats to always tape and edit phone calls before they get on the air.

For Talk formats, live calls are even more likely to suffer when there’s talkover. Be Patient. A second or two of dead air won’t matter if the call is good.

– – – – – – –
Tommy Kramer
Talent Coach
214-632-3090 (mobile)
e-mail: coachtommykramer@gmail.com
Member, Texas Radio Hall of Fame
© 2024 by Tommy Kramer. All rights reserved.