Television and Radio Announcers


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Television and Radio Announcers


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.

StateCity / RegionTypical SalarySalary RangeJob Count% of All Jobs
AKAnchorage$40760$18K – $48K600.03%
ALBirmingham – Hoover$17970$16K – $35K1800.04%
ALDothan$20740$16K – $47K500.08%
ALHuntsville$39740$17K – $57K500.02%
ALMobile$18390$16K – $28K1000.06%
ALMontgomery$19380$16K – $43K700.04%
ARFayetteville – Springdale – Rogers$23490$16K – $45KN/AN/A
ARFort Smith$19360$16K – $46K500.04%
ARLittle Rock – North Little Rock – Conway$26210$18K – $66K900.03%
AZPhoenix – Mesa – Glendale$38370$18K – $183K2600.01%
AZTucson$32440$18K – $77K1000.03%
CABakersfield – Delano$36170$24K – $75K900.03%
CAFresno$32960$24K – $82K900.03%
CALos Angeles – Long Beach – Glendale (Metro Area)$47540$25K – $165K9100.02%
CAOakland – Fremont – Hayward (Metro Area)N/AN/A – N/A600.01%
CAOxnard – Thousand Oaks – Ventura$29730$22K – $59K500.02%
CARiverside – San Bernardino – Ontario$29060$20K – $50K2200.02%
CASacramento – Arden – Arcade – Roseville$48120$19K – $103K2200.03%
CASalinas$27930$18K – $54K800.05%
CASan Diego – Carlsbad – San Marcos$49780$27K – $120K2500.02%
CASan Francisco – San Mateo – Redwood City (Metro Area)$79290$39K – $179K1700.02%
CASan Jose – Sunnyvale – Santa Clara$29070$18K – $51K400.00%
CASanta Barbara – Santa Maria – Goleta$29730$20K – $58KN/AN/A
COColorado Springs$32630$18K – $60K800.03%
CODenver – Aurora – Broomfield$23590$17K – $85K3200.03%
COGrand Junction$28520$20K – $47K300.06%
CTHartford – West Hartford – East Hartford$27890$20K – $58K1100.02%
CTNorwich – New London$26500$19K – $43K800.06%
DCWashington – Arlington – Alexandria (Metro Area)$41840$18K – $78K4000.02%
FLCape Coral – Fort Myers$26070$18K – $49K1100.06%
FLFort Lauderdale – Pompano Beach – Deerfield Beach (Metro Area)$28600$18K – $110K1000.01%
FLGainesville$26570$17K – $51K400.03%
FLJacksonville$20520$17K – $47K1400.02%
FLMiami – Miami Beach – Kendall (Metro Area)$33650$17K – $71K2800.03%
FLNorth Port – Bradenton – Sarasota$22790$20K – $31K500.02%
FLOrlando – Kissimmee – Sanford$36170$17K – $157K1800.02%
FLTallahassee$22780$17K – $35K700.05%
FLTampa – St. Petersburg – Clearwater$30460$20K – $95K2400.02%
FLWest Palm Beach – Boca Raton – Boynton Beach (Metro Area)N/AN/A – N/A1700.03%
GAAtlanta – Sandy Springs – Marietta$30430$18K – $160K3900.02%
GAColumbus$19030$16K – $41K600.05%
GAMacon$29320$20K – $144K400.04%
GASavannah$42310$26K – $93K400.03%
HIHonolulu$19070$16K – $47K700.02%
IACedar Rapids$29870$17K – $76K800.06%
IADes Moines – West Des Moines$52170$27K – $78K600.02%
IDLewiston$21930$18K – $30K600.26%
ILChicago – Joliet – Naperville (Metro Area)$37150$19K – $109K4800.01%
INFort Wayne$23490$17K – $51K800.04%
INGary (Metro Area)$23710$19K – $46K400.02%
INIndianapolis – Carmel$22980$17K – $58K2700.03%
INSouth Bend – Mishawaka$44690$20K – $95K400.03%
KSWichita$32030$19K – $75K1000.04%
KYBowling Green$19190$16K – $33K600.10%
KYLexington – Fayette$33300$18K – $75KN/AN/A
LAAlexandria$25630$20K – $51K500.07%
LAMonroe$31280$25K – $47K600.09%
LANew Orleans – Metairie – Kenner$32790$20K – $116K1800.03%
LAShreveport – Bossier City$33490$18K – $63K700.04%
MABarnstable Town$39780$18K – $59K300.03%
MABoston – Cambridge – Quincy (Metro Area)$38050$20K – N/A4100.02%
MDBaltimore – Towson$44740$20K – $104K1200.01%
MIDetroit – Livonia – Dearborn (Metro Area)$35430$18K – $102K900.01%
MIGrand Rapids – Wyoming$29120$21K – $59KN/AN/A
MILansing – East Lansing$32100$17K – $59KN/AN/A
MNMinneapolis – St. Paul – Bloomington$36310$18K – $135K3700.02%
MOCape Girardeau – Jackson$19270$16K – $31KN/AN/A
MOColumbia$28760$17K – $53K600.07%
MOKansas City$23870$18K – $70K2200.02%
MOSpringfield$29600$17K – $76K900.05%
MOSt. Louis$19180$16K – $57K3100.02%
MSJacksonN/AN/A – N/A1000.04%
NCCharlotte – Gastonia – Rock Hill$28560$20K – $146K2800.03%
NCGreensboro – High Point$42490$17K – $139K700.02%
NCRaleigh – Cary$26490$17K – $90K900.02%
NCWilmington$20990$17K – $34K400.03%
NCWinston – SalemN/AN/A – N/A400.02%
NELincoln$40910$25K – $69K500.03%
NEOmaha – Council Bluffs$29890$19K – $62K1300.03%
NJTrenton – Ewing$40680$19K – N/A600.03%
NMAlbuquerque$31890$17K – $48K500.01%
NMLas Cruces$18680$17K – $25KN/AN/A
NVLas Vegas – Paradise$75430$25K – $165K1700.02%
NVReno – Sparks$39700$20K – $97K800.04%
NYAlbany – Schenectady – TroyN/AN/A – N/A700.02%
NYBuffalo – Niagara Falls$19720$17K – $74K1000.02%
NYNassau – Suffolk (Metro Area)$35160$17K – $81K800.01%
NYNew York – White Plains – Wayne (Metro Area)$36550$17K – $131K11400.02%
NYPoughkeepsie – Newburgh – Middletown$30460$17K – $63K500.02%
NYRochester$32550$18K – $113K1100.02%
NYSyracuse$20360$16K – $49K600.02%
OHCanton – MassillonN/AN/A – N/A400.02%
OHCincinnati – Middletown$22150$17K – $86K2200.02%
OHCleveland – Elyria – Mentor$37490$19K – $157K2200.02%
OHColumbus$21430$17K – $63K1600.02%
OHToledo$18980$17K – $144K1600.05%
OHYoungstown – Warren – Boardman$44710$22K – $90K300.01%
OKOklahoma City$18430$16K – $25K1400.02%
OKTulsa$34680$19K – $71K700.02%
OREugene – Springfield$25550$19K – $47K800.06%
ORMedford$40140$19K – $61K600.08%
ORPortland – Vancouver – Hillsboro$33250$19K – $78K2000.02%
PAAllentown – Bethlehem – EastonN/AN/A – N/A800.02%
PAErie$21910$16K – $48K700.05%
PAPittsburgh$24200$17K – $53K2500.02%
PAScranton – Wilkes – Barre$34330$18K – $56K900.04%
PAState College$18,870$16K – $37K600.09%
PRSan Juan – Caguas – Guaynabo$23,030$16K – $44K800.01%
RIProvidence – Fall River – Warwick$39,790$19K – $122K1100.02%
SCCharleston – North Charleston – Summerville$39,440$24K – $72K900.03%
SCColumbia$27,620$18K – $83K1100.03%
SCGreenville – Mauldin – Easley$40,600$18K – $120K1200.04%
SDRapid City$27,030$18K – $37K700.11%
SDSioux Falls$40,590$26K – $86K600.04%
TNChattanooga$30,210$17K – $82K500.02%
TNClarksville$23,260$17K – $32K500.06%
TNJohnson City$20,450$16K – $29KN/AN/A
TNKingsport – Bristol – Bristol$30,320$17K – $54K500.04%
TNKnoxville$21,750$17K – $48K1300.04%
TNMemphis$27,320$17K – $84K1700.03%
TNNashville – Davidson – Murfreesboro – Franklin$23,560$17K – $75K2900.04%
TXAbileneN/AN/A – N/A400.06%
TXAmarillo$23,340$17K – $46K500.05%
TXAustin – Round Rock – San Marcos$33,990$19K – $109K1500.02%
TXDallas – Plano – Irving (Metro Area)N/AN/A – N/A3700.02%
TXEl Paso$34,520$18K – $74K500.02%
TXHouston – Sugar Land – BaytownN/AN/A – N/A2600.01%
TXLubbock$26,440$17K – $45K600.05%
TXSan Antonio – New Braunfels$33,440$18K – $56K2600.03%
UTSalt Lake City$33,230$20K – $77K2600.04%
VARichmond$27,800$17K – $57K2000.03%
VAVirginia Beach – Norfolk – Newport News$27,320$17K – $59K1000.01%
VTBurlington – South Burlington$28,810$19K – $50K700.06%
WASeattle – Bellevue – Everett (Metro Area)$45,280$21K – $115KN/AN/A
WASpokane$46,050$20K – $114K1000.05%
WIMadison$29,450$17K – $82K1600.05%
WIMilwaukee – Waukesha – West Allis$24,300$17K – $132K2700.03%
WVCharleston$24,140$18K – $44KN/AN/A