It is common for announcers to have a bachelor's degree in broadcasting, communications or journalism. Many have previous experience working with television and radio equipment. Work experience is often gained via internships offered through their TV or radio station. Typically, public address announcers require a high school diploma. There is usually some on the job training provided on a short term basis.
Education & Training
Even though public address announcers do not require any formal education past their high school diploma, many TV and radio announcers have a bachelor's degree in order to remain competitive for entry-level jobs. TV and radio announcers often have a bachelor's degree in communications, journalism or broadcasting.
There are numerous college broadcasting courses including diction and voice to allow students the opportunity to improve and strengthen their vocal abilities. These classes prepare students to confidently work with the software, audio equipment and computers used at TV and radio studios.
It is common for announcers and public address system employees to undergo short term training on the job once they are hired. This training is often specific to the station and their equipment. They need to be familiar with everything prior to a large entertainment or sporting event. Sports announcers may include training regarding the basic information and rules associated with the sports they are covering.
TV and radio announcers commonly undergo some short term training on the job in terms of operating the production and sound equipment. Most employers prefer applicants to have certain basic skills prior to being hired. Applicants often gain these skills from working through internships at TV or radio stations or amassing these skills from their college degree program.
Skills and Qualities that will Help
Computer skills: TV and radio announcers ideally should have great computer skills. They will be relying on broadcast related devices, editing equipment and computers.
Interpersonal skills: TV and radio announcers need to answer phone calls on air on the fly and be able to interview guests. Party emcees and DJs or disc jockeys need to be comfortable working with clients to plan different options for entertaining.
Persistence: It is extremely competitive to gain entry into this occupation. A variety of auditions may be required in order to gain an opportunity to work on the air. Most entry-level announcers have to work for a small station and may need to relocate to a small market in order to obtain their first posting.
Research skills: The important topics of the day must be researched in order for the announcer to make logical comments regarding the current events during their show.
Speaking skills: It is vital that announcers have excellent timing, clear pronunciation and a well controlled and pleasant voice.
How To Advance
Very often TV and radio stations run on a skeleton staff; therefore, advancement in these circumstances is not very common. Many advancement positions come with relocating to a larger station or broader market.
Typically, announcers require a few years at a smaller station in order to grow into their personalities on air. During that period, they learn techniques for becoming more comfortable and sounding more credible as an on-air talent. It becomes easier to be more conversational with their guests and cohosts. Experience and time enables applicants to advance to positions in broader markets. This commonly offers more challenges, responsibility and higher rates of pay.
Large market stations rely on announcers past performance and personalities when making hiring decisions. TV and radio announcers must prove that they can engage, attract and maintain a decent sized audience.
Many TV and radio station announcers complete additional tasks such as updating and creating social media presence on a variety of social networking sites. They may spend a portion of their energy selling advertisers' commercial time, or making promotional appearances on the station's behalf. An applicant needs to demonstrate their flexibility and versatility at the smaller station to advance their career.