Tommy Kramer Coaching Tip #14 – Don’t ask Questions, make Statements

We’re constantly barraged with questions on the air—in radio and TV. You’ve heard them…

  • “Do you want a great deal on a new car?” (No, I want a crappy deal on an old car. That’s a really stupid question.)
  • “Got milk?” (No, got Gatorade. Oh, and those billboards you have up, the picture of some athlete with a milk mustache—tell him to wipe his mouth.)
  • “What do you think?” (I don’t care, and neither do you, really. You just want me to do your show for you.)

I’m convinced that questions are the death of radio, including those vapid little rhetorical questions, like ending a line with “Right?” or “Okay?” or “sound good to you?” If you need my response, you’re out of luck. I’m busy. I have a life. (George Carlin covered this best with “When will all the rhetorical questions end?”)

Questions don’t sound like you’re talking to me; they just sound like you’re pretending to talk to me.

So put everything in STATEMENT form. You’ll get a totally different kind of reaction – an emotional reaction – and the things you say will carry more weight, because making a Statement tells me what you think—which questions don’t do. Plus, using a Statement is a stronger “call to action,” so people respond to it differently. “Vote now” is much more emphatic than “won’t you vote now?”

Start today. It’s easy. Say “You can win Eric Clapton tickets” instead of “Do you want to win Eric Clapton tickets?” Say “I’d love to know what you think” or “feel free to weigh in with your thoughts” instead of “What do you think?”

Oh, and this “make Statements” philosophy should be applied to your recorded Imaging and Promos, too. The answer to ANY question in your Imaging is “No.”

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Tommy Kramer
Radio Talent Coach
214-632-3090 (iPhone)
Member, Texas Radio Hall of Fame
© 2013 by Tommy Kramer. All rights reserved.