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How to Get Into Radio Broadcasting? – The Ultimate Guide

Written by R. Pennington / Fact checked by R. Combs

how to get into radio broadcasting

Radios are where you can express your personality and share your knowledge with a broad audience. Still, the niche can be unwelcome and competitive. You must stand out among a myriad of broadcasters to have your voice heard.

But life is full of opportunities and possibilities! If you aim for a career in radio broadcasting, this article is for you. We’ll provide the ultimate guide for anyone to become the star of the station.

How to get into radio broadcasting? Find the answer below!

4 Easy Steps to Get Into Radio Broadcasting

What to prepare

Building a career, especially one that you love, is not an overnight task. The journey will take years, lots of patience, and maybe some tears. The first thing you need when getting into radio broadcasting with no experience is a College/University degree.

Then, gather some useful experience and an impressive work portfolio. We’ll explain how to get each of these in the step-by-step guide below.

Step 1. Get a degree

The most straightforward step to any career is a college or university degree. Besides providing you with an accredited foundation, a radio broadcasting school will teach you the fundamental skills to get started in radio hosting.

There are many positions in a station, such as radio host, station manager, radio DJ, account specialist, or radio technician. Each requires a different degree.

  • If you want to work for a radio station as a production specialist, you will need a degree relating to science or politics.
  • If you want to be on air and talk to the audience, you should have a degree in broadcasting, journalism, or mass communications.
  • If you want to get into sports broadcasting, you might want to specialize your study in sports news and events broadcasting.

You should think carefully about the specific job you want and leap with purpose. In addition, select a radio broadcast degree that includes an apprenticeship. Most employers will ask for at least three months of experience.

A degree is crucial to get a job in FM radio, but it can be rather expensive and time-consuming. What to do if your current situation doesn’t allow such degrees?

Step 2. Volunteer at your local station/Join an apprenticeship

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If you are not in the right place for a university degree, try searching for an apprenticeship without a degree. Only a few companies accept such candidates, but you will land on one if you keep searching.

Another route is to seek a volunteer opportunity at your local station, community, school, or hospital—anywhere that uses a radio to announce news and events.

If you can’t find one, consider starting your own channel on a free platform, such as Podcast or Youtube. Working as a self-employed broadcaster for a while will reveal whether the job is truly for you.

Besides, you’ll gain hands-on experience and have a foundation to get a job at a radio station.

Step 3. Develop the core skills

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When you join the internship or a volunteer job, pay attention to developing the core skills of a broadcaster, such as technical issue troubleshooting, eloquence, script writing, confidence, a sense of humor, and adaptability.

Additionally, familiarize yourself with the FCC guidelines. FCC stands for the Federal Communications Commission. They are responsible for regulating the use of radios throughout the U.S.

Step 4. Apply for a job

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The last step is to seek, apply for a job, and become a radio broadcast host. You might be asked to showcase your speaking skills in a demo session. So, prepare thoroughly and stay confident throughout the interview.

Recruiters will look for a person who can maneuver conversations, bring excitement, and emphasize heart-pounding moments when being on air.

You can also start working as a radio broadcasting assistant to slowly develop your skills and confidence. The position might revolve more around behind-the-scenes tasks, such as welcoming guests, preparing contracts, maintaining studio equipment, arranging competition prizes, and contacting winners.

What Are the Requirements to Become a Radio Announcer?

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Each recruiter has different requirements and expectations for their broadcasters. But in general, you will need a bachelor’s degree, work experience, and some key skills to get a radio job.

Requirements to become a radio announcer
Education A degree in broadcasting, journalism, or mass communications
Work experience Experience from an internship or volunteer position

Self-gained experience as an independent online broadcaster (through Podcast or Youtube)

Skills Advertising, composing scripts, technical troubleshooting, and communication skills
Median Salary (2022) $51,734 a year (approximately $25 an hour)

What Do Radio Broadcasters Do?

A day-to-day life of a radio broadcaster won’t just revolve around being on air and talking to the audience. You might need to do other tasks, such as writing and editing scripts, conducting interviews, preparing radio equipment, and researching and inviting guests.

Don’t expect your job to be simple and easy! You will have an irregular schedule (usually includes early morning and late night), extensive working hours, and a long to-do list almost every day.

Frequently Asked Questions

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What qualifications do you need to be a radio host?

To become a host and work at radio station, you need at least a degree (diploma, associate, or university) in communications, broadcasting, or journalism. It is the foundation for your career.

A degree, however, is not sufficient to get a job. Recruiters will often ask for some hands-on experience, even through a three-month industry placement, a volunteer job at a local station, or a few months operating your high school’s radio station. The key is not to show up with merely your degree.

How do I become a radio DJ without a degree?

Radio DJs are needed in almost every station, including AM/FM, Satellite, and Internet radio services. So, if you want to become one, you will definitely find an opportunity. To begin, ask to volunteer at a school or local station.

Operating controls and mixing boards requires a lot of practice and experience. Find as many learning opportunities as possible and work hard when you get one.

Remember that a degree doesn’t mean much without useful experience. Employers need someone who can get the job done.

How to keep radio listeners engaged?

The key is to know your listeners. Nobody sticks around for random and irrelevant content. Remember that each group of listeners is interested in a different topic and hosting style. So, put yourself in their shoes and build close connections with your audience.

With time, you will find the group that vibes with you, and they will become your loyal audience.

Conclusion

We hope our article brought you the most useful information. Through radio broadcasting, you can share your passion and knowledge, bring more laughter, announce the hottest news, or simply accompany people on their commute.

It is a fascinating occupation that can bring you as high as $6,000 per month. And now that you know how to get into radio broadcasting, when will you kickstart your career? What first step will you take? Join the discussion in the comment section below.

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