As always, Valerie Geller was an inspiration at Radio Days Europe. I first became aware of her work. Even though I’ve heard her mantra of “tell the truth, make it matter, and never be boring” many, many times over the last decade, it’s a message which continues to resonate. “No matter what the platform, story-telling matters”, Valerie said today.
She was on a panel with another Valerie, Valerie Weber from a commercial music radio station based in Bavaria, Germany. She explained how story-telling is important in mostly music radio also, not just talk. “Every song is like a short movie” she said at one point. She illustrated this by saying, her listeners had been moved by the dramatic qualities of a song by Adele which they had simply translated from English into the Bavarian dialect. She also mentioned a great sounding on-air promotion they did where they asked listeners to tell them the story behind a significant bill they had to pay. For the best story, the radio station paid the bill on the listener’s behalf.