Great breaks achieve a positive strategic goal back to the show. They communicate, both in content and presentation, something about the show plot. Breaks which score are real, relevant, and fun. They earn you valuable images. Here are some breaks by Reynolds Group shows which achieve this.

WGFB Sean and the Gas Pump

Sean & MichelleIf you want to grab the attention of the listeners, tell them a great story.  Listeners love stories. Sean and Michelle, Lite Rock B103, Rockford, IL know this.  Sean had an almost-odd encounter with a gas pump.  He told listeners the story, with its twists and turns, then opened the phones.  The very best listener stories come when you tell yours, then ask them to tell you theirs.

Karson & Kennedy Race to 1K

Karson & KennedyLast month on Karson & Kennedy on MIX 104.1, Boston, we did “The Race to 1K” where we challenged the two co-hosts to spend the month meeting listeners.  The first to meet 1000 listeners won.  This was another effort to get our team out in public and to generate lots of local content for the show through the audio they got during visits with listeners.  Here’s one break which showed how much fun they had when they went out.

WBMX Lana is Angry About the Massage

Karson & KennedyIf you’re telling a story on the show that has other people involved, instead of just giving the details of the story yourself, get them to participate so there is more to play with.  Karson and Kennedy, MIX 104.1, Boston, ventured into Karson’s relationship with his wife, Lana.  She’d purchased a massage for him that he never used and this caused friction in their relationship. Their great producer, Mike Morgan, told Lana to listen to the break they were about to do on-the-air.  He then had her leave a voicemail with her reaction (a novel approach).  This break is Lana going off, uninterrupted, on Karson.  It’s a terrific character building break because Lana is very real, very passionate, very opinionated, and very funny.

KYGO Tracy Talks Minnesota

Ryno & TracyI am not a fan of lists – they’re easy content but not very personal.  Unless you do something with them that is uniquely yours.  Ryno and Tracy, KYGO, Denver, found the list of least sexiest American accents.  They could have just read it to the audience and commented, but they personalized it when Tracy, noting how hated a Midwestern accent is, called her husband and tried to seduce him with a Minnesota accent.  Lots of silly fun.

The Queen on the Royal Wedding

Jimmy & YvonneJimmy and Yvonne on DAVE-FM, Atlanta have a regular character on their show called The Queen.  He’s a flamboyant gay guy who tells the market all the fun places to go each weekend. Who better to have in the studio than Bob The Queen when they needed commentary on the Royal Wedding the week it was happening?  Great contributing characters fill a specific role on the show and tend to create talk because of this focus and their humorous point-of-view. Here’s The Queen on the Wedding.

WBMX Barrett Say Red Sox Players Names

Karson & KennedySometimes a break happens on a Reynolds Group show that is perfection.  This is one of them. The Red Sox are on the cusp of another World Series title and Karson and Kennedy, MIX 104.1, Boston know this is top shelf, very relatable content to the market.  Listeners remember you not for the topics you choose, but for what you do with the topic.  They had Karson’s three-year old son, Barrett, say the names of the Red Sox players and an intern, who happens to hate baseball, had to decipher them.  Here are the strategic things accomplished in this break: character definition, deep authenticity, high relevance of topic, innovation because of what they did with the topic, and the chemistry of the room drove the humor.

Nick’s Home Phone

Rollin' With Nick CannonWhile out on paternity leave, Nick Cannon from New York’s 92.3 NOW wanted to stay in touch with listeners.  So he did something completely out of the ordinary.  He gave listeners his home phone number, which he says he’ll answer when he’s there.  Then to prove the number works to the skeptics in the studio, he dialed it and a very pregnant Mariah Carey answered. Now, all of New York has Nick’s home phone number, which is a nice was to create buzz.  The audio is below so enjoy!

MOJO Rachel at the Store

Mojo in the MorningRadio is one of the best mediums to tell a story because we can paint pictures with words, tone, and emotion.  Want to truly understand the value of telling a story?  Tell one well to listeners and stop halfway.  They’ll ask that you finish it.  They won’t if you cough out facts, figures, metrics, and lists.  That’s the power of stories.  In this segment on MOJO in the Morning, Channel 95.5, Detroit, Rachel tells a story about waiting on line at a retail establishment.  Her story has wonderful twists and turns, totally defines her, and is exceptionally captivating.  Mojo also finds way to involve listeners in the process, making this short break have multiple dimensions to keep those just tuning in completely engaged.

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