What Makes Radio Imaging Obsolete

What Makes Radio Imaging Obsolete

Despite the advances in radio imaging that production companies have brought in the last five years, it’s saddening to note that there are still some imaging producers who have stuck themselves to the old ways. Here are the reasons.


Drops give station liners a certain degree of hype. It adds texture, variety and punch. It emphasizes a point. Drops are still in use nowadays, however, you need to “drop” those overused and antiquated drops like Tom Cruise’s “you complete me” or those clips you grabbed from TV shows such as The Simpsons. Come on, drops, as exciting as they can be, need to be unique and updated.

Here are some tips on choosing the best drops for your production.

  1. Ideally, grab drops from the latest movie. Those that create classic movie lines. I remember when the movie Transformer just came out, I heard a radio liner which included a popular line in the movie which went “have your crew stepped out”.
  2. Grab drops from the latest episodes of TV shows. If you are a big fan of late night shows, it’s a great way to take guest introductions from the host. Intros like “please welcome Mariah Carey” sound really hot especially if you have a power intro in mind.
  3. Subscribe to production services. Why not? They are everywhere! And the best part is, you’ll just have to wait for the new stuff to arrive, no hardwork. They’ll do the research for you. But be cautious though, you might lose your job.

Lasers and Zaps

LasersOMG, does anyone still use them these days? I know a lot. Most of these stations have not matured in their production skills. They are deeply in love with their production CDs which they bought more than ten years ago. I mean like lasers and zaps and doodads are great to hear, but that was a decade ago. Its’ time to move on, time to grow up.

But did you think getting the latest production library is the hippest thing to do? No. Don’t spend too much either on blips, squeaks, scratches or other contemporary production effects. Your listeners won’t appreciate them.The IN thing these days is to make your production sound as organic as possible. I mean you can’t always throw in white noises, squeaks, beeps and blips on your production all the time!

But in all fairness to the great lazers and zaps in the 80s and early 90s, which I have grown to love, they do still have a place in radio production. You can still use them for your oldies station or for your special weekend programming when you are showcasing hits from those years.

The thing is there is so much you can do with radio imaging production. Think outside the box, as most radio producers say. Listen to the what the world is listening right now, watch what your listeners are watching and try to incorporate that with your production. Again, the latest trend in radio production these days is to make them as natural as possible yet very fresh. So dump the old!

This post is an adaptation of Trevor Shand’s article on Broadcast Dialogue. Trevor Shand does freelance production and voiceover duties for Rogers Vancouver and Toronto. He currently lives in Los Angeles where he is the Production Director and promo voice for KROQ-FM. Currently, he is the new voice of Harvard Radio’s Wired 96.3. He may be reached at Trevor [at] kroq.com. Contact RadioJingles.co.nr to submit your radio production article.

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