A Day at the Public Radio Station Pledge Drive  

bigandtallreturn 38M
1538 posts
3/27/2006 6:28 pm

Last Read:
5/7/2006 8:06 am

A Day at the Public Radio Station Pledge Drive

Ever flip through PBS one day, and you see someone pleading for money while a row of phones with people answering calls are in the background?

That's what is called pledge drives. Since public broadcasting does not air (or accept) commercials, these stations get by on financial support from the viewers, or in radio, the listeners. And since I do work at the Public Radio Station, we're having our pledge drive beginning today. And since I feel the need to share my pain with you, I'll break down my day working this drive:

6:30 AM- arrive at the station. I can already smell the doughnuts and the coffee. Do ya THINK we're ready? Because when you catch a whiff of doughnuts and coffee, well, that's when you know you're ready.

7 AM- LET THE DRIVE BEGIN! I am "floor boss" for the first several hours, meaning I must keep tab of any and all pledges we get. We have 4 phones, and anywhere from 2-4 volunteers (actual listeners who kindly donate their time) manning the phone at all times. Being floor boss isn't so bad when it's slow, but when it's busy... UGH. Thankfully, we start slow, because really, I couldn't cope quickly with a fast start today.

8 AM- now the drive is seriously underway. All 4 phones are ringing all the time. A good amount of money is pledged. The average is about $25 to $50, but we'll get $100 and even $200 from listeners. (The record for highest amount pledged on the phone at our station was $10,000 back in 1988.) The last hour of NPR's Morning Edition always bring in good numbers, anyway.

9 AM- with the classical show taking over, the callers disappear. So do the donuts. DAMN.

5 PM- with an occasional few short spurts, we get really no serious volume of calls all day... until a challenge is laid down during the second half of All Things Considered. People usually call and leave challenges for the listeners to see if they'll donate. The challenge for this hour? If 25 pledges are made, the man will donate $2,500. Will we make it?

5:30 PM- we're at 13 calls. 12 to go...

5:45 PM- 19 calls... will we make it?

5:50- 23 calls. Come on, folks...

6 PM- with a last-minute flurry, we got 30 pledges (!), 5 more than necessary. That's an extra $2,500 to go with the $3,110 we made during the hour. (One call made after the limit is passed: "Is the challenge still on?" "No, ma'am." So the bitch hangs up.) It's dinner time, courtesy of the fine folks at Arby's. It's also time for our most controversial show...

Democracy Now! Yes, that bare-bones, liberal-and-proud-of-it show that's unafraid to portray Bush in a fairly harsh light. This is one of those shows you either love or hate. Despite being a card-carrying liberal myself, I don't like the show because it's a chore to listen to. But a lot of people love it. A lot of others hate it, too; during the last drive (we have a fall drive and a spring drive per year) one caller screamed in my ear "Until you assholes remove that garbage, I WILL NEVER PLEDGE AGAIN!"

7 PM- we fail to remove Democracy Now, despite that pissed-off caller's demand, and make a cool $1,000 for the hour. When we aired The Infinite Mind in the same spot, we'd average $200. With that knowledge, what would YOU air?

From there, it's a long chore trying to survive the last hour.

8:40 PM- I finally arrive home.

Yes, I worked 13+ hours today. With the non-broadcasting job, however, I'll have to work roughly 6 hours at BOTH jobs tomorrow through Thursday, then probably do another 13 hour shift at the Public Radio Station on Friday.

Then, it's the weekend with my Adult Friend.

See, there IS a reward for hard work.

"Today may be the first day of the rest of your life, unless you live on the other side of the International Date Line, then yesterday was the first day of the rest of your life."- Larry Andersen

PassionKisses4Me 45F

3/27/2006 8:01 pm

Hard work does pay baby....keep it up hehehehe



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