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Ideas and technique to help you promote and image radio

Why all the branded intros, Daddy?

Guest post flagAnthony Gay of Reelworld Europe explains that production must have a purpose. This post originally appeared on Reelworld’s blog but we think it deserves a wider audience.
Anthony Gay

Anthony Gay, Reelworld Europe MD and Daddy.

Branded Intros, Power Intros, Singtros, Funtros, Zingtro’s (O.K., I made that last one up) we’ve all come across them in our careers and more than likely used them in some shape or form. We’ve all heard that sell as well: “to seamlessly weave your station name into the beginning of the songs, enhance music flow, own the artists…” You know what I mean.

My young son is just entering the stage where he’s full of questions and his response to every answer I give him is another question, the classic: “Why, Daddy?”. Well, sometimes it’s good to keep asking questions to get the real point.

Branded intros sound cool (and they do enhance music flow) but if that’s your sole rationale for getting them on air then you’re only getting half the benefit. If everything on air is a branded intro, then they become ordinary, don’t stand out and you lose an opportunity to highlight or reinforce an image. Ask yourself the Why Daddy question? Rather than machine gun your branded intros, take careful aim.

Here’s 5 suggestions that might be worth considering:

1. Highlight new songs

Probably the easiest and most obvious way to use Branded Intros, especially where you creatively name the song and artist. Just remember to swap them out when they move into the next phase of their musical life cycle especially if you include a new VO copy line.

2. De-cluttering junctions

By having certain song clock calls as branded intros you know you never need to add another piece of production at a particular place in the hour and it means you can get to the music more quickly.

3. Highlight a library category

What musical point of difference can you highlight that is also an audience benefit? Maybe your feel good songs, your ballads, or your big testing rhythmic tunes? Just make sure your research tells you they’re the songs that are an opportunity to get a competitive edge.

4. Highlight core artists

Only playing branded intros from your core artists can help you connect with the artists you want to be known for. That’s a given. But if you go down this route make sure they are your killer core artists. Don’t dilute them with second level songs. And remember to review regularly. The Build Intros we create for ReelWorld Production Vault are great ways to deepen that connection.

5. Promote a show or feature

Get really organised and tactically select songs to promote your big cash giveaway, the breakfast show, or the big concert you’re promoting. This way your branded intros become mini-promos or signposts. Find lyrics to cleverly highlight the promotion.

Branded intros enhance music flow and blur the line between production and great creative content, but if you’re not asking the ‘Why Daddy?’ question then you might not see the full benefit of them on air.