Every single thing that happens on-air is important. For music stations, that’s particularly true in music scheduling, coding, and producing the sound of the station. How songs fit together is critical to the listening experience, but most programmers stop at scheduling the songs. Perfect song segues are a powerful weapon against pure-play streaming services, not to mention other stations.

Music scheduling software and automation systems can make a station sound good because it’s possible to standardize the mechanics. Technology can make the station consistent and tight, often superior to humans pushing buttons.

But no matter how precisely each track is edited and transition points set, technology can’t manage everything based on the next song. But music programmers paying attention to the music mix can make a station sound great by managing each transition. Here’s how.

Perfect Song Segues