Television and Radio Announcers

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Television and Radio Announcers


Education

What’s Needed:

  • Most radio and TV announcers hold a four-year bachelor’s degree in journalism broadcast journalism or communications.
  • Radio announcers may also pursue some technical training to work with station equipment.

What you study:

You’ll study all of the following in a broadcast journalism or communications program:

  • Intro to Communications
  • Public Speaking
  • Composition
  • History of Communications
  • Media Theory


Video Overview

Shows a quick overview of radio and television announcing careers. Produced for the US Dept. of Labor.


A Day in the Life

You can work in either radio or television as a broadcaster.

As a radio or TV announcer you may be called by many names. If you work at a television station you’ll likely be referred to as a news weather or sports journalist. If you work at a radio station you might be called a DJ or radio show host. Your position means that you have a duty to speak to your station’s viewers or listeners and ensure that they are provided with timely engaging content.

You’ve recently taken a job as a morning news anchor on a local TV station. Your day begins well before the sun rises. After you wake up you review news bulletins and watch national cable news to catch up on any major stories that broke overnight. You also listen to the radio on your way to the station to catch up on other news stories.

You’ll broadcast news weather and traffic info.

Once you’ve arrived at the station you check in with hair and makeup. You’ve done most grooming tasks yourself and just need some finishing touches. About 30 minutes before the morning broadcast begins you sit down at the anchor’s desk with your co-host and review the morning’s news stories. You make edits for readability as needed and double-check to confirm the order of the show.

You can choose a specialty such as sports traffic or music broadcasting.

As soon as the morning broadcast starts you announce your channel and call numbers to viewers. You banter for a few seconds with your co-host before heading straight into the first story of the day which is about an industrial fire that burned down a warehouse during the night. It’s your job to report the story with professionalism and integrity.

You and your co-host continue to bounce off each other as the show progresses. You report on a wide variety of news and human interest stories. You also introduce and check in with traffic and weather specialists at your station. At the end of the broadcast you offer a quick recap of traffic and weather reports for viewers who tuned in late. Before the broadcast ends you sign off and repeat your station’s channel and call numbers.

It’s your responsibility to ensure that your fans stay informed throughout the day.

Your day goes on after the first broadcast. The show’s producer asks you if you can look over the script for a human interest story for the next day. You do so and realize that there’s a gap in footage. You head out with a camera crew to interview a woman who is organizing a community-wide clothing drive and get the footage to your producer before leaving for the day. As an announcer you’ll relax while at home but you’ll always be on the lookout for the next big news story.


Certifications and Licensing

No formal certification is needed to work as a radio or TV announcer. However radio announcers who want to work at small independent stations may wish to pursue technical training in radio or sound engineering.


Job Flexibility

Full-time versus part-time:

As an announcer you may work odd hours. Many beginning announcers work either late night or early morning shifts. On most days you will put in at least eight hours at the station where you work. When there are breaking news events you may be required to work around the clock.

Work location:

Most broadcasters work out of a TV or radio station. Depending on your role you may also go out into the field to interview story subjects report on breaking news or participate in community events.


Recommended Websites

  • U.S. Department of Labor Occupational Outlook Handbook for Announcers: This Bureau of Labor Statistics handbook provides a wealth of information about careers in the field of television and radio broadcasting. Salary projections and career outlook information will be particularly useful to prospective announcers.
  • North American Broadcasters Association: NABA is the premier professional organization for broadcasters working in the Americas. The newsroom and members areas of the site will be of particular interest to those who want to learn more about happenings in this field.
  • National Association of Broadcasters: NAB’s website provides policy and advocacy information to broadcasters from around the nation. Use the site to learn more about the issues that are shaping the future of broadcasting.


Salaries by City

See typical salaries and ranges for this career below*. Shift click to sort by more than one column — for example first shift-click on state and then shift-click on salary to find best and worst salaries in each state.

State City / Region Typical Salary Salary Range Job Count % of All Jobs
AK Anchorage $40760 $18K – $48K 60 0.03%
AL Birmingham – Hoover $17970 $16K – $35K 180 0.04%
AL Dothan $20740 $16K – $47K 50 0.08%
AL Huntsville $39740 $17K – $57K 50 0.02%
AL Mobile $18390 $16K – $28K 100 0.06%
AL Montgomery $19380 $16K – $43K 70 0.04%
AR Fayetteville – Springdale – Rogers $23490 $16K – $45K N/A N/A
AR Fort Smith $19360 $16K – $46K 50 0.04%
AR Little Rock – North Little Rock – Conway $26210 $18K – $66K 90 0.03%
AZ Phoenix – Mesa – Glendale $38370 $18K – $183K 260 0.01%
AZ Tucson $32440 $18K – $77K 100 0.03%
CA Bakersfield – Delano $36170 $24K – $75K 90 0.03%
CA Fresno $32960 $24K – $82K 90 0.03%
CA Los Angeles – Long Beach – Glendale (Metro Area) $47540 $25K – $165K 910 0.02%
CA Oakland – Fremont – Hayward (Metro Area) N/A N/A – N/A 60 0.01%
CA Oxnard – Thousand Oaks – Ventura $29730 $22K – $59K 50 0.02%
CA Riverside – San Bernardino – Ontario $29060 $20K – $50K 220 0.02%
CA Sacramento – Arden – Arcade – Roseville $48120 $19K – $103K 220 0.03%
CA Salinas $27930 $18K – $54K 80 0.05%
CA San Diego – Carlsbad – San Marcos $49780 $27K – $120K 250 0.02%
CA San Francisco – San Mateo – Redwood City (Metro Area) $79290 $39K – $179K 170 0.02%
CA San Jose – Sunnyvale – Santa Clara $29070 $18K – $51K 40 0.00%
CA Santa Barbara – Santa Maria – Goleta $29730 $20K – $58K N/A N/A
CO Colorado Springs $32630 $18K – $60K 80 0.03%
CO Denver – Aurora – Broomfield $23590 $17K – $85K 320 0.03%
CO Grand Junction $28520 $20K – $47K 30 0.06%
CT Hartford – West Hartford – East Hartford $27890 $20K – $58K 110 0.02%
CT Norwich – New London $26500 $19K – $43K 80 0.06%
DC Washington – Arlington – Alexandria (Metro Area) $41840 $18K – $78K 400 0.02%
FL Cape Coral – Fort Myers $26070 $18K – $49K 110 0.06%
FL Fort Lauderdale – Pompano Beach – Deerfield Beach (Metro Area) $28600 $18K – $110K 100 0.01%
FL Gainesville $26570 $17K – $51K 40 0.03%
FL Jacksonville $20520 $17K – $47K 140 0.02%
FL Miami – Miami Beach – Kendall (Metro Area) $33650 $17K – $71K 280 0.03%
FL North Port – Bradenton – Sarasota $22790 $20K – $31K 50 0.02%
FL Orlando – Kissimmee – Sanford $36170 $17K – $157K 180 0.02%
FL Tallahassee $22780 $17K – $35K 70 0.05%
FL Tampa – St. Petersburg – Clearwater $30460 $20K – $95K 240 0.02%
FL West Palm Beach – Boca Raton – Boynton Beach (Metro Area) N/A N/A – N/A 170 0.03%
GA Atlanta – Sandy Springs – Marietta $30430 $18K – $160K 390 0.02%
GA Columbus $19030 $16K – $41K 60 0.05%
GA Macon $29320 $20K – $144K 40 0.04%
GA Savannah $42310 $26K – $93K 40 0.03%
HI Honolulu $19070 $16K – $47K 70 0.02%
IA Cedar Rapids $29870 $17K – $76K 80 0.06%
IA Des Moines – West Des Moines $52170 $27K – $78K 60 0.02%
ID Lewiston $21930 $18K – $30K 60 0.26%
IL Chicago – Joliet – Naperville (Metro Area) $37150 $19K – $109K 480 0.01%
IN Fort Wayne $23490 $17K – $51K 80 0.04%
IN Gary (Metro Area) $23710 $19K – $46K 40 0.02%
IN Indianapolis – Carmel $22980 $17K – $58K 270 0.03%
IN South Bend – Mishawaka $44690 $20K – $95K 40 0.03%
KS Wichita $32030 $19K – $75K 100 0.04%
KY Bowling Green $19190 $16K – $33K 60 0.10%
KY Lexington – Fayette $33300 $18K – $75K N/A N/A
LA Alexandria $25630 $20K – $51K 50 0.07%
LA Monroe $31280 $25K – $47K 60 0.09%
LA New Orleans – Metairie – Kenner $32790 $20K – $116K 180 0.03%
LA Shreveport – Bossier City $33490 $18K – $63K 70 0.04%
MA Barnstable Town $39780 $18K – $59K 30 0.03%
MA Boston – Cambridge – Quincy (Metro Area) $38050 $20K – N/A 410 0.02%
MD Baltimore – Towson $44740 $20K – $104K 120 0.01%
MI Detroit – Livonia – Dearborn (Metro Area) $35430 $18K – $102K 90 0.01%
MI Grand Rapids – Wyoming $29120 $21K – $59K N/A N/A
MI Lansing – East Lansing $32100 $17K – $59K N/A N/A
MN Minneapolis – St. Paul – Bloomington $36310 $18K – $135K 370 0.02%
MO Cape Girardeau – Jackson $19270 $16K – $31K N/A N/A
MO Columbia $28760 $17K – $53K 60 0.07%
MO Kansas City $23870 $18K – $70K 220 0.02%
MO Springfield $29600 $17K – $76K 90 0.05%
MO St. Louis $19180 $16K – $57K 310 0.02%
MS Jackson N/A N/A – N/A 100 0.04%
NC Charlotte – Gastonia – Rock Hill $28560 $20K – $146K 280 0.03%
NC Greensboro – High Point $42490 $17K – $139K 70 0.02%
NC Raleigh – Cary $26490 $17K – $90K 90 0.02%
NC Wilmington $20990 $17K – $34K 40 0.03%
NC Winston – Salem N/A N/A – N/A 40 0.02%
NE Lincoln $40910 $25K – $69K 50 0.03%
NE Omaha – Council Bluffs $29890 $19K – $62K 130 0.03%
NJ Trenton – Ewing $40680 $19K – N/A 60 0.03%
NM Albuquerque $31890 $17K – $48K 50 0.01%
NM Las Cruces $18680 $17K – $25K N/A N/A
NV Las Vegas – Paradise $75430 $25K – $165K 170 0.02%
NV Reno – Sparks $39700 $20K – $97K 80 0.04%
NY Albany – Schenectady – Troy N/A N/A – N/A 70 0.02%
NY Buffalo – Niagara Falls $19720 $17K – $74K 100 0.02%
NY Nassau – Suffolk (Metro Area) $35160 $17K – $81K 80 0.01%
NY New York – White Plains – Wayne (Metro Area) $36550 $17K – $131K 1140 0.02%
NY Poughkeepsie – Newburgh – Middletown $30460 $17K – $63K 50 0.02%
NY Rochester $32550 $18K – $113K 110 0.02%
NY Syracuse $20360 $16K – $49K 60 0.02%
OH Canton – Massillon N/A N/A – N/A 40 0.02%
OH Cincinnati – Middletown $22150 $17K – $86K 220 0.02%
OH Cleveland – Elyria – Mentor $37490 $19K – $157K 220 0.02%
OH Columbus $21430 $17K – $63K 160 0.02%
OH Toledo $18980 $17K – $144K 160 0.05%
OH Youngstown – Warren – Boardman $44710 $22K – $90K 30 0.01%
OK Oklahoma City $18430 $16K – $25K 140 0.02%
OK Tulsa $34680 $19K – $71K 70 0.02%
OR Eugene – Springfield $25550 $19K – $47K 80 0.06%
OR Medford $40140 $19K – $61K 60 0.08%
OR Portland – Vancouver – Hillsboro $33250 $19K – $78K 200 0.02%
PA Allentown – Bethlehem – Easton N/A N/A – N/A 80 0.02%
PA Erie $21910 $16K – $48K 70 0.05%
PA Pittsburgh $24200 $17K – $53K 250 0.02%
PA Scranton – Wilkes – Barre $34330 $18K – $56K 90 0.04%
PA State College $18,870 $16K – $37K 60 0.09%
PR San Juan – Caguas – Guaynabo $23,030 $16K – $44K 80 0.01%
RI Providence – Fall River – Warwick $39,790 $19K – $122K 110 0.02%
SC Charleston – North Charleston – Summerville $39,440 $24K – $72K 90 0.03%
SC Columbia $27,620 $18K – $83K 110 0.03%
SC Greenville – Mauldin – Easley $40,600 $18K – $120K 120 0.04%
SD Rapid City $27,030 $18K – $37K 70 0.11%
SD Sioux Falls $40,590 $26K – $86K 60 0.04%
TN Chattanooga $30,210 $17K – $82K 50 0.02%
TN Clarksville $23,260 $17K – $32K 50 0.06%
TN Johnson City $20,450 $16K – $29K N/A N/A
TN Kingsport – Bristol – Bristol $30,320 $17K – $54K 50 0.04%
TN Knoxville $21,750 $17K – $48K 130 0.04%
TN Memphis $27,320 $17K – $84K 170 0.03%
TN Nashville – Davidson – Murfreesboro – Franklin $23,560 $17K – $75K 290 0.04%
TX Abilene N/A N/A – N/A 40 0.06%
TX Amarillo $23,340 $17K – $46K 50 0.05%
TX Austin – Round Rock – San Marcos $33,990 $19K – $109K 150 0.02%
TX Dallas – Plano – Irving (Metro Area) N/A N/A – N/A 370 0.02%
TX El Paso $34,520 $18K – $74K 50 0.02%
TX Houston – Sugar Land – Baytown N/A N/A – N/A 260 0.01%
TX Lubbock $26,440 $17K – $45K 60 0.05%
TX San Antonio – New Braunfels $33,440 $18K – $56K 260 0.03%
UT Salt Lake City $33,230 $20K – $77K 260 0.04%
VA Richmond $27,800 $17K – $57K 200 0.03%
VA Virginia Beach – Norfolk – Newport News $27,320 $17K – $59K 100 0.01%
VT Burlington – South Burlington $28,810 $19K – $50K 70 0.06%
WA Seattle – Bellevue – Everett (Metro Area) $45,280 $21K – $115K N/A N/A
WA Spokane $46,050 $20K – $114K 100 0.05%
WI Madison $29,450 $17K – $82K 160 0.05%
WI Milwaukee – Waukesha – West Allis $24,300 $17K – $132K 270 0.03%
WV Charleston $24,140 $18K – $44K N/A N/A

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