It was on the radio…

Susann 2 croppedThis post is by Nancy Jardine

I’ve been interviewed twice for radio programmes. Experience 1 was a ‘telephone interview’ about my knowledge of the Scottish poet, Robert Burns. That was a bit nerve wracking because I was scared I wouldn’t hear properly on the telephone (I’ve almost total deafness in one ear) but my fears were unfounded since the line was okay. Experience 2, a couple of weeks ago, was face-to-face with one of the live DJs at a local radio station. NECR (North East Community Radio – Scotland) is one of 3 stations which serve North East Scotland.

As requested, fifteen minutes before the ‘Morning Show’ was scheduled to start, I met the DJ named Colin. He ‘prepped’ me to ensure I wasn’t going to collapse into a blubbering blob of nerves. In fact, I wasn’t nervous at all. I think my recent speaking events/presentations and selling my books ‘over the counter’ at my Craft Fairs have helped me with projecting my public author persona. The interview was easy, though my recall afterwards was pitiful. When I went home my husband and his brother, who was on one of his regular visits to us from California, were pretty enthusiastic about my coherence and content. Sharing the interview would be against their copyright rules, so I’m afraid so I can’t add it here, though my husband made a copy on his phone which I can keep. It’s very crackly but just about audible. (Actually I hate hearing my own voice!)

Kintore School history bookI really wanted to promote The Taexali Game, my locally set time travel novel for Teens/ YA which I self- published in May 2015, however, Colin was very interested in my earlier writing of non-fiction historical books which I did for local school projects.20151106_105512

It wasn’t a bad thing, though, because on the Saturday following the interview at my Craft Fair at Insch (my last Wrangler post is about Insch) my table was facing the front doors. A man came into the hall, walked straight over to me and said, “You’re the author who was on the radio!” He then introduced everyone who entered the hall to me proclaiming, “Here’s the author who was on the radio!” I sold 18 novels at Insch and had two requests to borrow the earlier non-fiction works that I wrote about local historical subjects.

Maybe word will spread even further now about my writing because I also recorded a radio commercial for NECR which ran on the 3rd, 4th 5th November. My biggest Christmas Craft Fair of the year is actually happening right now as I write this Wranglers post. The events are on the 6th and 7th November so look out for an update later on whether I think my radio advert was money well spent.

After viewing some current advice on Youtube videos for radio advertising, and reading some articles, what seemed to be best for my radio commercial was an amalgam of the following for a 60 second advert.

  • The opening attention grabber…Catch the listening audience attention by asking a relevant question or by creating a need. Answer this by naming the product within the first few seconds.
  • The distinctiveness of the offer…Give the listeners an enticement like something unique about the offer.
  • Express the message articulately and elicit emotion from the listener…Aim for direct engagement by offering a chance to explore the product and give them the benefits of buying the product.
  • Call to action…Tell them where they can access/buy the product. Focus on generating sales by highlighting the telephone number, or email, or website. Make this the main thrust of the advert.
  • Provide further information on the seller and products available…Mention anything relevant which makes the offer distinctly different, though plausible.
  • Repeat the call to action…Repeat the ‘how to buy’ details

Other important details to think about in no particular order.

  • The advert should be enounced clearly and articulately given, ensuring that the listeners can ingest the information easily with little effort in listening. The reading needs to include/ be enhanced by non verbal communication ie enthusiasm of the voice-over person. Use strong positive language to enhance the product. Not to much info as it can overload the listener.
  • Use sound elements carefully and only if it enhances the product and doesn’t detract from the listening process.
  • Emphasise the local elements sensitively to avoid the ‘me-me’ isms.
  • Be sure that you can provide what you say in the add i.e. authenticity.
  • Choose a suitable style- Simple announcement; dialogue; testimonial; ask a person on the street/reviewer; life scenario with product given as the solution; story.
  • Only use humour carefully if guaranteed to work.

I found out that NECR prefer a 30 second slot, so this is my amended and accepted script – some 45 seconds with added music. (NB – Calls to action i.e. repetitions of email and telephone numbers were zapped!)

“Looking for a unique Christmas gift? A signed copy of The Taexali Game by Kintore author Nancy Jardine is fast-paced time travel reading – a fantastic bargain at £6.  Join 3 teenagers from Kintore in a seriously deadly game back in AD 210 when the legions of Ancient Roman Emperor Severus confront local Taexali tribes at Bennachie. Meet the author at Thainstone Christmas Craft Fair 6th &7th November to buy signed copies, or FOCUS Craft Fairs at venues around Aberdeenshire. For details of all Nancy Jardine Novels: The Taexali Game; Celtic Fervour Historical Adventures; and Contemporary Mysteries call 01467 632954 – that’s 01467632954 – or email for postal copies. Novels also for sale at shops in Kintore.”

BTW- I recorded the ad in one ‘take’ but John, a different DJ who recorded it, told me to do a second take with a repeated telephone number. Yes- a Call to Action was added in! 

Have a lovely weekend! 

CFS End Sept 2015Nancy Jardine writes: historical romantic adventures; contemporary mysteries; time travel historical adventure for Teen/ YA readers.

3 mysteries no words

Find her at the following places:   Twitter @nansjar  Facebook: and (for The Rubidium time Travel Novels.) email:


Amazon Author page for books and to view book trailer videos:

Most novels are available in print and ebook formats from Amazon, NOOK, Barnes and Noble; W. H.;; Smashwords; TESCO Blinkboxbooks; and various other ebook stores.

My photo from 6th November- just before my banner decided to snap itself shut! My first sale was a woman who had heard the ad and came to get a copy! 20151106_145112


24 thoughts on “It was on the radio…

  1. Good tips Nancy! I do many 60 second radio commercials for various groups I’m involved in. I have always had good luck with only having to usually read through it once and get it to almost the exact second. They are tricky and sometimes hard to know what to include when you want to give lots of info, and it’s just not possible. And one radio station makes me thank two different of their freqeuncies within “my” PSA time. Ha. Anyway, they are fun and a challenge. Glad you have it down. 30 seconds would be a huge challenge.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That’s great to know that you do it often. I agree, Neva, about the time factor. Maybe with a lot of practise I could do a 30m sec take but when I tried to cut it down to that I missed out too much ‘important’ info. Those add on ‘thanking’ conditions you mention must be a bit of a bind… ;-(


    1. Hi Cher’ley. I’m answering this after the second day (7th) and I sold 25 books today. I’m a happy lady but that was my biggest Fair of the Christmas season and don’t expect those sales numbers all the time. I hope the commercial info might help someone sometime. I’m still unsure if it was worth the money spent but the recording experience was fun!

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Hearing your lovely singing voice when you share on this blog, I think you’d do very well on radio, Abbie. I won’t hesitate to call the radio station again if I have something new to share as it was a positive experience.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. That is wonderful Nancy. Look at you. Love the ‘commerical’ and know you did a fabulous job, and also on the radio. Good for you. Thank you for sharing you knowledge and experiences. Very helpful. Doris


    1. Thanks, Doris. Using the radio for commercials is a newish concept to me but I might do it again if i have a definite promotion to work to.


  3. I would be over the moon if I was on the radio. And to think someone recognized you and announced who you were in front of everyone…not to mention selling a lot of books. And you had fun doing it. It sounds like money well-spent to me. Thanks for the pointers too, Nancy. Hopefully they’ll come in handy for me some day.


    1. There are more pointers ‘out there in the ether’ for making commercials, Sarah, but for my more ‘parochial’ coverage I narrowed down to the list I posted here. I think some radio stations might work with different targets so I’d check them out as well as the above ideas.


  4. Nancy, I am so happy for your success. It couldn’t happen to a nicer person and it’s well- deserved. Thank you so very much for sharing this information with us. That’s why I love this group. Many writers try to keep their “tips” to themselves, but a good writer shares them with everyone! Good luck as you continue on this wonderful journey.


    1. Thank you, Linda. I’m selling some paperbacks now via my methods above, but I’ve a big challenge ahead and that’s to make progress with selling my ebooks. They’re definitely in the doldrums, for that read in stagnant water, and need to be rescued!


    1. That would b amazing, Mike. I think I’d be very nervous on T.V. We all have our own methods for marketing our books but I think that no matter what you do, there will always be another avenue to explore to gain more sales.


  5. Good for you. I hope your promotion is super successful!
    I used to do PSAs for our local Gilbert & Sullivan group. I know how hard it is to get everything you want to say into 30 seconds.


  6. Congrats on getting on the radio and nailing that commercial, Nancy. You are really getting yourself out there for future readers. I hope this generates sales and helps brand your name for future buys. Best of luck!


    1. Thank you. You’ve pinpointed the crux of the matter, Travis. I’m not entirely sure/hopeful of a lot of immediate sales but bringing my work to the attention of ‘future readers’ is definitely an intention.


  7. That’s totally AWESOME, Nancy! Congratulations!! Advertising is always tricky, wondering if it really works, so I hope you found great success. It’s such fun to connect with people, be it at booksignings/fairs, via Internet, radio or TV — we authors need to try different venues and see what works. I look forward to hearing more about your endeavors. Best to you always!


    1. Thank, Gayle. I’ve had feedback about it being a ‘clear’ advert and it enticed a few people to venture forth to meet me- though not many more than that.


  8. I’ve done one pre-recorded radio interview and thought I would be terribly nervous, which is odd since I’m a teacher by trade, but it went so well that I wasn’t nervous at all. I’ve since done two video interviews and really enjoyed them.


    1. Well done! – video is something else, Joe. I suspect that would maybe make me nervous but till I experience it I can only guess. 😉


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