Take Your Listeners to Disneyland Every Day!


A visit to Disney is great anytime of the year, but the experience is enhanced when you realize that it’s not for you. It’s for your guests, those that are on the adventure with you. A holiday at Disneyland, like your radio show is not about you.

It’s for your kids or grandchildren. It’s about family. It’s about sharing a moment of pure joy. It’s recognizing that escape from reality for a few hours, or a few days (if you’re lucky).

Experiencing it through the eyes of someone you love causes you to have a much better time. There’s joy in seeing others enjoy themselves.

Your Show Is Disneyland

Here’s a different way to look at your radio station and your show. Think of it as Disneyland, and listeners are your children. In a way, you’re responsible for engaging, indulging and spoiling them to insure they have a great time.

You and your co-hosts should make it your goal to give them the  Disneyland experience every day,

Here’s how you can do that:

Disneyland Key #1: Be Fully Engaged

It’s fine for mom and dad to take the kids to the park, but if they spend the day on the phone, texting or checking Facebook, the kids feel that they’re disconnected. They deserve undivided attention. It’s hard work making sure the kids get the most out of Disney.

Yes, you probably can multi-task and check email or texts during commercial breaks or while a song is playing, just as a parent can sneak in an email or quick conference call to a colleague, or check a score on a mobile device. But you shouldn’t. It affects the experience.

Focus. Stay engaged. The kids can feel it, and so can listeners.

Disneyland Key #2: Enhance the Experience

Build excitement for each attraction, ride and event. Disney is an organized, cohesive collection of separate attractions. When you exit one attraction, there’s another one nearby. To get the most of it, you promote it to the kids. You tell stories about it, building anticipation.

And no matter how many times you’ve been on Pirates of the Caribbean, they still look forward to it. So celebrate it.

If you don’t get into the excitement, the kids’ experience won’t be the same. Your enthusiasm is contagious.

“That was a great ride. I loved it when the log splashed down and we got soaked”.

Then move on to the next ride to build momentum and pre-promote how great it’s going to be.

On the air, the music, promos, service information and contests are attractions. So are those daily features that become routine to you over time.

It’s all part of the experience, and every air talent’s primary job is to make each more exciting to your “kids”.

Disneyland Key #3: The Downside of Disney

Standing in line is a drag, and it seems that most of the day is spent in endless lines. But if the five minutes in the Indiana Jones ride is awesome, it’s totally worth the 90 minutes waiting to get in.

Commercials suck, but they’re not going away. They’re a necessary part of the entertainment experience. The key question is whether your content makes waiting through them worthwhile.

Disneyland Key #4: Planning The Trip

Disney trips can be overwhelming. There’s too much to do, too much to see and you just can’t get it all done in a day. So unless you invest in a three-day pass, you have to make choices and plan your day to have the best possible experience.

It gets complicated figuring out the best use of time each visit. You don’t want to miss anything. But you also know that if you try to do everything, you’ll probably miss some of the best moments.

You have to make choices.

On the air, there are dozens of topics each day that you could talk about. They may all be strong topics, but you don’t have time to do everything. Not well, at least.

Be selective. Plan it. Prepare. Mine each topic so every break is truly “A” material. Make sure each moment is maximized to create memorable experiences for your guests.


On the way out of Disneyland, your kids will probably ask how soon they can come back and do it again. Isn’t that amazing? They can’t wait to come back. But that next visit to Disney isn’t like the first. Now there’s an expectation. The bar has been raised for the next visit.

If you do it right, listeners can’t wait for your next show. And like visitors to Disneyland, over time listeners demand more.

They expect their favorite attractions to be there, and they expect something fresh and new to surprise them. In other words, they expect you to be better, and it’s your responsibility to deliver it every single day.

Are you making each show a memorable moment? How will you thrill your “kids” tomorrow?




Tracy Johnson is President and CEO of the Tracy Johnson Media Group, offering programming & promotion consultation, talent coaching & development and digital strategy consulting. Get more information at www.tjohnsonmediagroup.com or email tracy@tjohnsonmediagroup.com.

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