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TUNING IN

A blog dedicated to the world of broadcast and public relations

Wednesday, August 8, 2007

What’s the difference between an audio news release and an audio bite line, and when should each be used?

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An audio news release is a 60-second news release containing a 20-second sound bite from a spokesperson that is phone pitched to stations and networks. An audio bite line is sound that is placed on an 800 number line for alerted stations and networks to record and is either an audio news release, a series of sound bites or a combination of the two. The primary difference between the two services is the element of pitching. Audio news releases are phone pitched to targeted outlets, while an audio bite line is distributed by sending an alert about the availability of the audio, and if stations are interested, the reporter will access the audio via phone or the Web. Determining when to use each primarily depends on who the target audience is for the project, and what the goals are for the message. Without actively pitching, the topic will have to be compelling enough to have reporters proactively record the audio. This means that stories for an audio bite line should focus on breaking news and other “hot button” issues that happen quickly. Another consideration is the overall objective of the project. If the goal is to reach a large number of stations in many markets in a short period of time, the audio bite line is the best technique to utilize. If there is local information relevant to specific geographic areas and a smaller target audience, then the audio news release is the best way to go.

posted by Lynn Harris Medcalf

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