by Deborah Ng
There’s an interesting discussion happening in the BlogTalkRadio Yahoo group about keeping the conversation flowing when there are no call ins. We’ve all been there. We request listener call ins and no one responds, leaving us with awkwardness as we wing it while hoping someone, anyone, will toss a question our way.
What happens when you throw a party and no one is talking? Here are a few hints for avoiding silence when there are no call ins.
- Write a script – Many BlogTalkRadio hosts prepare a script beforehand. Besides writing an intro, create several talking points and expand on all those points before your show. Try and have more than enough material so that if you don’t have any callers, you can seamlessly go it alone.
- Prepare for a solo show – Go into each show with the mindset there may be no callers. Don’t depend on it to happen. Prepare for all eventualities. If you don’t expect any call ins, you wont experience any of the awkwardness that happens when no one dials your number.
- Have a friend or two on standby – Before the show, line up a few friends or family members to hang out on standby via Skype or email. If you have no call ins, request one of your standbys call and ask questions. Many times listeners don’t want to be the first to call in. Perhaps if one of your standby people are first, others will follow.
- Have a few articles and anecdotes handy – Before your show prepare a list of articles, blog posts and anecdotes relating to the day’s topic. If you find yourself with some time, quote from those articles and discuss.
- Look to the chat for ideas – Many hosts find questions to answer or ideas to discuss in the chat room. See what folks are talking about, and carry the discussion over to your show. Chatters love it when you make reference to them!
- Offer a list of resources – Talk about the resources available on your day’s topic. Find blogs, magazines, documentaries, books and anything else you can think of. If you find yourself in need of something to talk about, give out a list of the resources so listeners can further explore on their own.
- Play music – Many of our hosts use music as a way to avoid dead air. In fact, we just posted a list of places to find podsafe music to use!
I hope some of these tips help to keep you talking when there are no listener call ins. In addition to these hints, I’d love to learn what you do. What are your favorite hints for avoiding dead air?