I’ve just come back from the Student Radio Conference in Bradford where I thoroughly enjoyed speaking in two sessions, one on Outside Broadcasts with Rob Pobjoy (who wins best name), and the In Conversation With… session with James Walshe (who’s in charge at Kerrang! and Q Radio) and Jo Good from BBC 6 Music (who may have said something she hadn’t entirely thought through).
I think the two sessions went well. In the Outside Broadcasts session, Rob Pobjoy talked us through the various technology options, whilst I focussed on my Top 5 practical tips for making your OBs sound great. They were;
1) Let your presenter walk around to soak up the atmosphere and stories of the event
2) Set the scene using descriptive language
3) Produce and prepare the crowd
4) Plan, plan and plan (then make back-ups for your plans!)
5) Sound like you’re actually there!
The theme of the In Conversation With… session was loosely based around whether there are opportunities for students within the radio industry. We answered questions from the floor via the hashtag #sracon, which hopefully meant we were able to get to the real questions students have. Interestingly, many of them were about how to get into jobs that aren’t the classic presenter or producer roles. A really nice summary of what I had to say (written by Andy Vale for The Pips) can be found by clicking here, and provides a good round up of the whole Conference.
I won’t be the first or last to say this, but it was just great to be around so many people who are enthusiastic about radio and are thinking about the future of the medium.
A great addition to this year’s conference was the Meet The Industry slot, which responded to feedback from previous Conferences regarding the lack of opportunity to talk to the speakers. One of the best things about any radio conference is the chance to chat and meet new people, so well done to whoever put this in the timetable.
This was the first Student Radio Conference I’ve been to where I haven’t had an overwhelming feeling of apprehension, the feeling that if I don’t speak to every single speaker (or a particular one or two industry figures) then my career is over! It’s four years since my first year at Uni and my first SRA Conference, and for any students reading allow me to reassure you that good things come to those who wait (if you’re good and persistent), so relax and enjoy events like this!
It was also nice to catch up with friends who I’d made in that first year who are now starting to make serious waves in their own areas of the industry. It’s encouraging to reflect on progress from time to time.