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What Is A Promo? Promo Basics

Radio has undergone many changes over the years.  The way the medium is distributed and even consumed is drastically different from its inception.  It is this fluid nature of broadcasting that keeps things exciting for producers.  However, as much as radio has changed its principal foundations remain the same.  Good content and quality programming are paramount to to a station's success.  With that in mind we want to do a quick overview of a Programming basic – the radio promo.  


The ‘official’ definition I found for the term is:


promo (a shorthand term for promotion) is a form of commercial advertising used in broadcast media, either television or radio, that are used to promote a program airing on a television or radiostation/network to the viewing or listening audience.


This is a decent description of a promo – it certainly gives you the general idea of what one consists of – but this particular definition leaves out critical elements that are an important part of a broadcaster’s promo library.  In addition to using promos to highlight features occurring WITHIN your broadcast, use your promos to also promote important things OUTSIDE your programming.  These include:


  • Promoting your station website
  • Promote your social media presence: Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc.
  • Promote your contact information if applicable – email/phone/skype
  • Promote station contests


Remember the promo is YOUR time to promote what you need to make your station the best possible product reaching the most people.  Since we connect with listeners in so many different ways in this digital age it is important to inform your listeners where how they can engage with your station beyond your stream.  Your promos are the perfect place to do that.  We can always argue about what the correct definition of a promo is but I think we can all agree on the one thing: as Broadcasters we need to Promote Promote Promote!

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