Jobs are available within radio broadcasting, but competition in the business can be intense. If you want a career in radio, there are some ways to get your foot in the door.
Some academic courses are designed with radio broadcasting in mind. Many degrees in Communications and Media have radio broadcasting as part of the prerequisites. Courses will provide knowledge of not just on-air, but also the technical side.
Many will teach you how to create your own radio show. They prepare you to write and edit your own scripts and to study areas such as market demand and voiceovers. They are particularly useful for gaining the practice in radio that employers need.
The first way to start a radio broadcasting career is to do your research. Know your local stations first, contact them and be persistent. When you get your foot in the door of your local stations, you will begin to see exactly what experience you need.
Internship—unpaid work—may be your best choice at first, at least until you are ready for a permanent job. Volunteer to work on some shows. It demonstrates that you are serious, and will make your name familiar to employers when it comes time to hire.
If your plans include having your own radio show, you will have to work from the bottom up. Start by producing a demo tape to send to the station. Producers will get an idea of your voice, as well as your confidence and abilities. Make the “demo reel“—either cassette or compact disc—sound unique from anything that is heard on the station. This shows you are filled with fresh, new ideas—the most valuable asset of a radio performer.
However, do not be wildly different, or you may alienate your audience.
If you do get a chance to interview at your local station, make it clear you are willing to do just about anything, within reason. Weather, news or shows during odd hours. They are ways to gain experience.
The bottom line is this—radio jobs are extremely sought after, and nothing replaces foot-in-the-door experience.