The Christian Radio Homepage

 

 

Radio Interview

                                     

Mark Daniels

Program/Marketing Mgr.

WFIL

Philadelphia

 

 

Mark's Career Capsule
Mark Daniels is a 26-year veteran of radio and television. Currently (since 1994) the Program and Marketing Manager of the NRB’s 2006 Talk Station of the Year (WFIL) and Salem's Philadelphia NewsTalk station (WNTP), Daniels has received honors from the PAB  for his “On the Mark” commentaries and his daily “Mark Daniels Show.” Mark also serves as the host of two nationally-syndicated Christian teaching radio programs, "The Bible Study Hour with James Montgomery Boice," and "Every Last Word with Dr. Phil Ryken." Career highlights include serving as the announcer for a nationally-syndicated TV game show ("Yahtzee," with host Peter Marshall), and finding success as a GM, OM, PD, morning host, and talk host in both the general market and Christian media.

The father of a college senior (Alex) and a third-grader (Jessica), Mark serves as worship leader of his church, an actor and playwright, and president of a Bible conference. Mark, wife Susan, and their children reside in rural PA. 

 

1. Personally how do you keep the ministry in the “business”? 

Accountability through honest relationships...most importantly, my marriage. My wife is the most discerning person I've ever met! She is an excellent sounding board...eager to help me keep my eyes on Jesus, when I start to lose my focus and priorities.   

 

2. Overall, how is Christian radio different today, from 5 years ago?  

It's much harder than it was, even 5 short years ago...whether you're commercial or listener-supported, music or teaching-formatted. A lot of it is spiritual warfare, of course; our enemy is well aware of the impact of Christian radio. Also, our industry (radio) in general has changed so much; advertising and donor dollars, as well as listeners, are being stretched across many different media choices. But we have an advantage, I think. As the general market broadcasters are just beginning to grasp the realities of programming and selling a "niche," Christian broadcasters have been there for years.

 

3. What do you think are the main characteristics of today’s Christian radio PD? 

That varies with each and every unique situation. The job description is more elastic than Silly Putty! There are similarities, though, between successful Christian radio PDs...be they teaching/talk, or music programmers. It still comes down to one's facility to be organized, proactive, disciplined, mission-focused, and thick-skinned. Oh...and always carry a pack of Rolaids...:)

 

4. What criteria do you require for a song to be played on your station? 

It has to be within the confines of Gaither's "Homecoming Radio," "Let us Worship," or "Haven Today!" Seriously...we only play music at Christmas.

 

5. What kind of promotions work best for Christian radio? 

Those that are meaningful to the listener (not just the advertiser or underwriter), simple to understand and participate in, laser-focused on only one objective, fun to hear and talk about, and those that fit your target demo. Anything that violates listener expectations is not worth doing...even once.    

 

6. In your opinion what are the biggest obstacles facing Christian radio today? 

1) Christian complacency--a moral "dumbing down" that has, sadly, reached into the church  2) Any station's unwillingness to embrace the opportunities of new media  3) Economic pressures that can force us into making wrong decisions about what we do, or how we staff  4) The risk of burnout, from the incredible stresses of our calling.

 

7. What do you believe is the primary role of the Christian radio air personality?  

To do whatever his PD tells him or her to do...:) Seriously: in these days of voicetracking, syndication, and automation...anyone privileged enough to be a Christian radio personality should reflect the awe of his or her good fortune every time they open the mike. Here's what has always worked for me: when I played music, be it Country, AC, CHR, or whatever...I would always be sure to share my love for the music that I was playing, every chance I had. It was the one thing I knew for sure I had in common with the audience. In the same spirit...if your love for Jesus is perceptible--even viscerally--by what you say on the air...you will have something very special in common with every listener.   

 

8. What (if any) Christian radio stations do you consider as innovators today? 

A tough question to answer--I have so many friends, at so many stations, that are truly out ahead of me--I'm afraid to leave out even one. But a short list would have to include KKLA, WMCA, KPRZ, WJTL...oh, and did I mention WFIL? :) 

 

9. Where do you see Christian radio in 5 years?  

Creative, locally-focused, trend-savvy, God-centered and tenacious stations will survive and thrive. They'll have unique content that's available on-demand at a well-maintained website, and they'll be constantly aware of what their listeners like, and expect. Everyone else will be under more stress than they've every experienced...or, will have left for a career at Wal-Mart.  

 

 

 

Previous Interviews


 

 

© Copyright 2006 HisAIr.Net