As a baseball fan, I take every opportunity to connect my favorite sport with radio. Hall of Fame manager Earl Weaver of the Baltimore Orioles was one of baseball’s great characters. He was once asked the key to his legendary success. He became famous for this response, “Sometimes it’s the small things. But mostly, baseball is all about good pitching and the three run homer.”

A three run homer changes the game. It can overcome a lot of errors. It turns a 2-2 tie into a 5-2 lead. It transforms a team that’s trailing 5-3 into winning 6-5. And a three run homer energizes the crowd, activates fans, and changes fortunes.

Radio shows need 3 run homers because they are remembered.

What’s Your Three Run Homer

Radio shows need to recruit and activate an avid, passionate and loyal fan base. And fans love home runs. But we can’t just hope for it will happen. Many shows are masters of the mundane, obsessing over details that may be useful, but not transformational. They need a three run homer.

Don’t get me wrong. Details are important. Personalities should take care to hit stop sets at the proper time and execute the format with precision. But as important as they might be, those details don’t excite the fans.Three run homers change the outcome of the game.

Discovery Channel’s annual Shark Week is an example. The cable network shows up in the top 5 every year. And they’ve been doing it for 31 years.

Hallmark’s Christmas movies are a three run homer. They start earlier every year and now have extended to a Christmas in July special.

Your three run homer may be an over-the-top promotion that you become known for the way WCIC/Peoria did with their Been Tipped Over campaign. The station activated the audience to make an impact with waitresses in their community.

The Bert Show taking kids to Disney World each year as part of Bert’s Big Adventure. The promotion changes lives.Jeff and Jer turned a phone call into a multi-year campaign with Becky’s House, a shelter for victims of domestic abuse.

These are big examples, but it also includes focusing ticket giveaways on one time slot on one day, then promoting the special event as Timberlake Tuesday, rather than stretching the giveaways over a week or two.

Or maybe it’s simply finding a One Thing feature and to turn it into a must-listen moment.


In baseball, three run homers overcome mistakes. Walks and errors are quickly forgotten when a slugger steps up and changes the game. It’s the same for radio shows. Execute the small things, and train the team to look for the big moments. Then hit it out of the park.

As Earl Weaver said: Sometimes it’s the small things. Sometimes it’s a three run homer.


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