The Backstory: How We Work

Our weekly one-hour program, Life Love & Health: Special Edition, is an outgrowth of our daily 90-second show, on the air since 2003. It has a pre-recorded format, as we need to script the show for accuracy. Our listeners and affiliates have very high expectations, yes, but they are also understandably critical. The ultimate responsibility for a health-and-medical show is to get it right, for all concerned

Our work is now divided equally between informational custom podcasts for highly targeted audiences, like hospital and medical center websites or an online pharma audience; and traditional radio broadcast. Once posted online, they’re broadcast by our national network of affiliates in order to inspire search results. This a massive sea change for us, as virtually 100 percent of our work appears in online and broadcast mediums, to insure the greatest possible exposure, especially for search-engine optimization and to attract information seekers for specific diseases, conditions and hospital/medical expertise.

Ideally, we bring patients in with their healthcare providers and chat about what life is like when an individual and their family experiences, say, heart disease, cancers, dermatologic issues, vision or hearing concerns, and how that plays out. The take-away value is that people are more informed about their options as we demystify what can be a daunting American healthcare experience.

How We Operate

All programming is pre-recorded as our team works from a verbatim transcript of the interview to craft a production script. Each one-hour Special Edition show consists of four 11-minute segments. Even if it’s the same guest for the entire one-hour show, each segment topic has to stand alone, which is advantageous for streaming, download listening and especially for people’s shorter attention spans. “Time-shifting” is my favorite expression. It simply means that people listen to programming when they want to versus when it’s available as a broadcast. I called it the “TiVo-ization” of audio. Once you’ve shifted-time and organized your life around getting what you want, when you want it, you’ll never go back.

Our recurring segments within the one-hour program include “Body Language,” “The Passionate Patient,” and “Newsmakers,” which cover health communications and health literacy, and “Listening To Your Body,” which is about what I call the Big Five Plus One in medicine, the basis for so many of our interviews and programs:

o recognizing and understanding symptoms
o finding the correct medical professional for an accurate diagnosis
o exploring treatment options
o developing realistic expectations
o living with the outcome and results
o how lives been changed & touched because of this health event

Why This Approach Is Unique

Speaking your language — “We’ve always believed that people identify with the speaker. There’s something about a real patient or caregiver or family member that rings true with the audience. And since it’s our mission to provide airtime for under-reported conditions and rare diseases, we ask patient groups to solicit questions from their members, which will then be posed to patients and expert guests on the show.”

The writer and the reader — “When we feature authors, we also feature readers. I would like to speak with folks who bought the book and ask them for honest feedback. That kind of experience really resonates with listeners. We’re not in the business of selling books; rather, we discuss results. What’s better, different, changed, because someone bought that book?”

Zero-waste communication — “We often turn our source material, those 20- or 30-minute interviews, into custom webcasts that sponsors can use as patient-education material. I encourage sponsors to put those transcripts on their websites. There are no secrets here. This is valuable information, and it’s for everybody.”

Long-term relationships — “We often have guests on the show more than once, to provide updates about their treatment or research, discuss recent developments in patient care, or share reader feedback if we previously discussed their book. We like the sense of continuity this gives our listeners.”