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Johnny Stone “TEASE-A-PALOOZA!”

You can dramatically increase your ratings with intentional and consistent teases of what is coming up on your show and the other shows on your radio station.


A radio tease is a brief phrase spoken by the on-air personality immediately before playing a spot, going into traffic or playing a song to tell the listener about a story coming up later in the show, in the day, or even tomorrow. The tease should intrigue the listener without either misrepresenting the story or revealing it entirely. The primary goal of a radio tease is to set an appointment or build anticipation for a future event. The tease whets the appetite of listeners, who will want the completeness of hearing the full story if they have an idea of what the story is about.



Vertical-Teasing elements in your show or another show. The goal is to increase Time Spent Listening.

For instance, in your show it would sound something like this: “Your style of buttering your toast tells us something about your personality! The whole story coming up in 7 minutes….”

Vertical teasing for another show might go something like: “You can wake up tomorrow morning with encouragement and joy in your heart because The Morning Crew presents “Today in Hope” at 7:05”! Also, the morning show can tease something coming up in the midday or afternoon or evening shows.

Horizontal-Teasing elements in your own show like Benchmarks happening tomorrow, an interview with an artist, or a topic. The goal is to increase Tune-in Occasions.

Use solid content in your tease and start off with your solid content. Use what I call the AIM Formula. Get their:


that builds…


that leads to…

Mental Commitment (subtle)

You want to create a Fear Of Missing Out moment!

The stronger the content of your teasing, the more likely your listener will make a point of either sticking around or tuning back in find out what it is you are teasing about.



Every tease is good. Some are better than others.


This one is OK- “Today at 12:15 Becky has “What’s the Name of that Song” on WGTS 91.9”

Better- “Do you get stumped like I do? What’s the Name of that Tune with Becky today at 12:15 on WGTS 91.9”


This one is OK-“Matthew West joins us tomorrow a little after 8 on WGTS 91.9”

Better-“The romantic thing that Matthew West does to keep his marriage strong. Maybe you can do it in your marriage as well! He’ll tell you more tomorrow at 8:10 on WGTS 91.9.”

Remember, content matters on your teases. The stronger the content, the more likely your listener will stick around to hear it or tune in the next day to hear it.



To help encourage your listener to stay for what could be another quarter hour, tease an element coming up soon.

Short time limit

“7 minutes, 2 songs”

7 minutes is a doable time limit for your listening to stick around if your tease content is good. 2 songs is like, “Hey, I can listen for 2 songs”!

Use exact time

For an element coming up that is outside of 7 minutes or 2 songs, give a precise time. “Can you name that 80’s tune with the Singing Rubber Chickens coming up at 5:30”.

You can go after the 5:30 time a handful of minutes, but never, ever do it earlier, at, like, 5:22. That violates trust. You can go a little bit later, but never earlier.


Creates longer time listening and more listening occasions

Teasing encourages your listener (who already likes you), to consume more of your show. It’s kind of like a program guide for your show. What you are doing with teasing is pointing out something else about the show that they may not know you’re doing since they usually have set listening patterns. You are helping them get more of what they like about you and your show. 



Here is a formula to show you how teasing increases your ratings by increasing the Time Spent Listening (Time Spent Listening (TSL) is a metric used by Nielsen Audio to determine ratings for radio stations in the United States. It is equivalent to Average Time Exposed (ATE), daily or weekly) and the number of Tune-in Occasions per week. (Nielson defines Tune-In Occasions as the number of times a listener tunes into a particular radio station during a specified time period.)


Now, every show is different, but for the sake of example, let’s say the average Time Spent Listening per tune-in per day is about 8 minutes.

Let’s say the average number of Tune-in Occasions a day from P-1 Listeners (the people who listen to your show more than any other) is 4. It may be eight minutes here, twelve minutes there and maybe a couple others of varying times during your daypart.

Let’s say the average P-1 will tune in about 3 days a week.

So, the average P-1 is tuned in 4 times a day 3 days a week, so they are giving you 12 quarter hours per week in listening.

With consistent teasing, you can get people who like you to listen one more quarter hour per day and one more day a week.

If you can turn a P-1 from 4 to 5 Tune-In Occasions a day and increase the days they tune in from 3 to 4, 4 times 5 is 20 quarter hours. You’ve come close to doubling your ratings.


Remember, you must be intentional in forming and scheduling your teases! I put some of mine into the daily run sheet for the show. In addition, I’ll find places to slip in a tease for my show or for one of the other shows. The key is to be consistent and deliberate with your teases. Teases must become a regular part of your show for you to reap the benefits of increased Time Spent Listening and Tune-In Occasions.


Johnny Stone is the afternoon show host along with his wife, Stacey, at WGTS 91.9 in Washington, D.C. Also owner of StoneStudiosLLC which produces production needs for radio and television stations. Contact Johnny at johnny@stonestudiosllc.com

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