An Audio News Release (ANR) is the radio version of a print mat release. It’s a simple and quick way to reach a mass audience. As a standalone tactic or add-on element to a larger plan, ANRs can penetrate top markets and increase impression numbers.
But all ANRs are not alike. Make sure to decipher subtle vendor language before selecting an ANR package. Otherwise, you could report exaggerated or even false audience numbers, landing you in hot water. This especially comes true when your client questions the validity of the impressive, but too-good-to-be-true, numbers.
When requesting a quote for an ANR, ask how your vendor verifies audience reach reports. If a vendor says ‘you are likely looking at 100+ million in audience’ for a very reasonable budget, this is probably a pitched ANR distributed via newsfeeds. This means the vendor will pay a nominal fee for the news feeds to send the segment to all of their stations.
Note: This does not mean that any or all of the stations will choose to air the audio news release. You may get 1,000 stations, you may get 100 or you may get 0. In this scenario, it's likely you will never actually know if/where the ANR aired. Radio monitoring is not as sophisticated as TV monitoring so it’s almost impossible to track ANR airings.
Also, when you get your coverage report, read the fine print! If language indicates airings are "determined by station surveys or producer feedback," what it means is "we don’t really know where this aired, but here is our best guess at coverage."
An alternative option is a 'secured placement’ ANR. These are guaranteed airings with network proof verifying stations, times and audience reach.
Beyond the obvious – truth in reporting – another benefit to 'secured placement' ANRs is you can also go deeper into your messaging and are not held strictly to an editorial standard. That said, you still want your ANR to sound credible by giving valuable "news you can use" and staying on top of the latest trends so listeners will stay tuned in to hear your message.
Ideal PR situations for an Audio News Release (ANR):
- Mass audience reach needed with an internal spokesperson
- Quick turnaround needed for a new product service launch
- Converting excess budget into mega impressions numbers for key messages