Success stories! We love ’em! By all means, feel free to send us yours. Meanwhile – enjoy.
by Radio Ink
We’re seeing more and more of this from former on-air hosts who’ve been fired from their jobs. Especially from hosts who’ve been in the business for years and have accumulated a loyal following. While PD’s and managers fire them for not delivering a few ratings points, some hosts are going out on their own, from the comfort of their own homes, taking their listeners with them, and pulling in podcasting ad dollars.
Jeff Dauler has an impressive radio resume. He’s been the producer for Baltzar & Pebbles in Boston, Mojo & Betsy in Tucson, Chico in The Morning in Philadelphia and The Bert Show in Atlanta.
In 2016 he took a co-hosting job at Star 94.1 in Atlanta as part of the Jeff and Jenn show. He knew moving to the other side of the mic would be a risk. Unfortunately, the ratings were not where they needed to be and he was let go.
Rather than looking through the trades for jobs or sending out tapes to PDs all over the country, Jeff decided to see if the audience he did have in Atlanta would stick with him. He decided to become a podcaster. With his wife Callie, Jeff launched The Upside podcast.
(This is part one of a two-part interview)
PBJ: Tell us about your career in radio and what happened?
Jeff: I have been in radio since I was 19 and have always worked in morning radio. Three years ago I had the opportunity to do my own show here in Atlanta. I had always been a co-host or producer. I went across the street but it didn’t work out the way I wanted it to. In December, they sat me down and said “look this isn’t going well for anybody. We have to get bigger ratings and more revenue. We need you to hit these ratings goals in the next six months.” Six months later, I didn’t hit the numbers, they called me in and said we should go our separate ways, which we did. Not too long after that my wife and I had a conversation about a podcast she was starting and she said you should do this with me. We asked the station as part of the separation agreement if I could be a part of the podcast and they said yes. We launched in July 2019 and ended up #7 on the Apple podcast chart for three days.
PBJ: What was it like to be fired from the industry you worked in for 25 years?
Jeff: It was the first time in radio I had been fired so it was disappointing not to succeed. The advantage I had being in radio for as long as I had is I wasn’t blind to the writing on the wall. The company and market manager came to me in December and gave me the game plan. I knew that when I came over to a headline role and put my name on a show it was a big risk….