SMU FM 97.1 FM Board Training – The Ultimate Voice Airborne

SMU FM Board

About SMU FM

As our vision and mission state, SMU FM was formerly called Channel Med and later transformed into the present Radio SMU, which is established as a non-profit organisation (NPO) i.e. not for gain but to provide a community radio service to the SMU and the broader community of Ga-Rankuwa and its neighbouring communities.

SMU FM is a communication platform that seeks to promote community participation in support of democracy, freedom of expression, diversity of opinion, and broadcast ownership and combating of Racism, Sexism and all forms of discrimination.


To augment the cross-cultural activities of the community at large through broad media broadcasting spectrum.


The connotations of SMU FM are to express and positively empower cross- cultural and socio- academic atmosphere through inspirations and phenomenal community’s epitomes of its desired future

SMU FM Board Training Lessons Learnt

  • SMU FM has just recruited a fresh board that has the goal to move the station to its next great phase in its on landscape lifetime. The station only being licenced 4 years ago has undergone the beauty of a newborn radio station, finding their feet from an operational stance, streamlining a foundation for the growth of broadcasting, and sedimenting a dedicated, talented, and pioneering station manager – Precious Pheelwane.
  • This is an exciting time for SMU FM, starting at the refinement of their mission statement, where the station is in a unique and powerful position to be a service centered around the greater awareness, infotainment provider , and community educator of matters and material that pertain to the medical knowledge ownership arena.
  • New station strats need to be focused on how to ground yourself in your feeder area. For both your community, and also advertiser retention, the brand and product need to provide a unique and relevant presence in their listener’s lifestyle. This would include at reshaping the programming to, in this case, showcase a number of strong, and served speciality programs centered around, firstly, the interests of the SMU students and university, and secondly, around the dictated format of medical learning, promotion and awareness.
  • With strat planning, always start small, simple, practical, executable and attainable. Target areas of action that require no financial constraints to the station (especially in its infant years). It is advised to start with a “bottom-up” approach to these goals. For instance
    • What do I want to achieve on air every 15 minutes.
    • What impact and relevance should each show have to my listener’s lifestyle.
    • What would I like a day’s programming goals to be if I were to quantify that in terms of a service rendered, a format sustained, a brand identify maintained, and a vision statement pursued.
    • What “seasonal” content, activisms, and events have I both planned for, and made a tangible positive effect and presence in.
    • What “on-year” goal or brand vision have I accomplished with beneficial growth to what I intended for the station.
  • Always see the merit in working with a skeleton staff that wants to contribute aggressively to your station, as opposed to a staff centered in mediocrity and dead weight.
  • Most importantly, in reference to the stations that have (and are listed to still be) lost their licences, service your dynamically changing community FIRST, and always do what it takes to keep you far from being considered a wallpaper medium.

TUKS FM – A Marketing Wrap Up. It’s About Now.

This month I was invited to give a short workshop to the talented marketing team at TUKS FM.

TUKS FM is a community station that is well over three decades old (in fact close to four) and is known for its ingenuity and innovation as a strong radio player in the industry. Also, being home to many a big radio, TV, media professional – TUKS FM continues to bring constant pride and talent to the industry as a whole.

Here are a couple of points that came out of the workshop:

Understand that radio is still a traditional medium that plays in many spaces, like digital. But at the end of the day, your marketing and promotions must live on the platform where you are giving your listener need, and where you are able to grow that audience first and foremost. By this I mean that campaigns that run solely on digital platforms like Twitter, Facebook or Instagram are great, but have to have a tie in to something that is happening on air.

If you are looking for ideas, look no further than your station’s yearly calendar. Plan all campaigns that can and do run seasonally, in advance. Not only can you focus stronger attention to detail with these already successful and purposeful events and campaigns, but half of your creative year’s work is done for you.

• On the point of dates and times – have a look around at what your community is running and is invested in on a yearly basis and get yourself in there. Make the calls. Book the days. And pitch up ready to push your brand presence. Find out why these are important to your community and use your marketing machine to drive bigger throughput and results with these partner campaigns.

How to start with the blank page? Well. Teamwork. Encourage creativity through brainstorming (the oldest and most effective trick in the book) – and punt out a page full of (any) ideas that your team comes up with. Trace through each one-by-one and start knocking the better ones from the best of your ideas.

Do you know your brand well enough? Where is it right now? Where is it going? What does it want to achieve? Make sure you always touch base with your station manager so that you are all on the same page. Assumption is the mother of all screw ups, but, to act intentionally as if you know better than your brand does is brand suicide.

• To wrap up, let’s get back to your ideas. It’s simple. Inception. Implementation. Close Out. Let’s look at these more closely:

o Inception: This involves the creative process of not only coming up with an idea but mapping out the road plan for you to make it fly. Discuss things like, why are we doing this, what is the benefit for both the station and the listener, is it feasible, when is it feasible, and where would it have to take place to be feasible? Who are your stakeholders in this campaign? Are they on air? External parties? Part of your team? The list of questions goes on.

o Implementation: Make the calls. Draw up a responsibility matrix (Responsible, Accountable, Informed, and Consulted) – assign tasks accordingly. A fair amount of risk management is important here to get things moving in the correct way. Then get it done. If you need a budget, then it should be approved through the right channels. If you needed a space, you should confirm it. If you need on air resources, be it interviews, pieces, or show stop placements, then make sure the programme manager and production manager are always involved.

o Close Out: This is about getting all your ducks in a row, and then putting them to sleep. Sign off documents. Make payment. Archive receipts. And please, draw up a report of lessons learnt. You may have many, many other campaigns that are similar in nature and could save you a lot of time in the logistical nature of what is needed and perhaps even the correct people who need to do the job as effectively as it should be.

Til next time.

– Chris