When we are planning documentaries and features we spend a lot of time thinking about "the story", the way we are going to tell it and the characters. It got us thinking here at the CMTO about live programs on radio and whether they also have stories and characters.
Whether you are producing a live music program or a radio documentary, every piece of content has a story. And every story has characters. It's often here that you'll find your best social media content.
Do music shows really have characters?
Take an Australian independent music show. One of its stories is about promoting culture. Each episode may have a different story focusing on different characters.
It is often thinking about these characters which will give you ideas about social media and other content which you can produce to engage audiences.
If your program is a general magazine program, you may not feel that your program has a story. Think about why you are doing the show. Perhaps you and your guests are the characters.
Once you have worked out what your story and characters are you will find it much easier to work out various forms of content for different platforms.
Talk Show Characters
If you are presenting a live talk show, perhaps your story is about local issues, the arts or sport. Think about your on air content and how you may be able to "extend the story" with a few simple steps.
For example, there may already be articles about an issue which have been published online. Maybe you will take photos or short videos of your "characters" to share on social media.
Some of the content you use may already exist. As a trusted producer, your audience is happy for you to curate content- bringing it together in one convenient place so they can take a closer look at the story.
In much the same way that not-for-profits are being encouraged to use storytelling online to engage with potential donors, radio stations also need to tell stories which will engage potential audiences.
You may not have thought of yourself or your guests as characters in a story - but it really helps to think about your work this way in order to produce more interesting content.