Phone Screening Priority: Keep Bad Callers Off The Air

Phone Screening Priority: Keep Bad Callers Off The Air

by Tracy Johnson

Hopefully, your show has a full bank of phones ringing throughout the time you’re on. But you probably don’t. Many shows (most shows) are so excited when a caller has a comment or a question, they put anyone on the air. This is a critical mistake. Every personality, producer and phone screener has a prime phone screening priority: keep the bad callers off.

Listeners don’t have right to be on. It’s your show. Not theirs. Just as game shows screen contestants, you should qualify callers before allowing them on the air. On NPR, their popular shows like Car Talk and  A Way With Words, the shows are recorded in advance. Yet they have “live” calls. How is this possible?

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Listeners call and ask their questions, leaving their phone number. They then get a call back if they’re chosen to be on the show. Each caller is prepped in advance and each break produced to sound live.

You screen phone calls in your personal life, right? How often do you answer a call from a number you don’t recognize? Or if that annoying ex calls, you can send it to voice mail and not have the conversation.

What To Look For

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