How Television News Programs Use Video News Releases

Document Type


Publication Date

Summer 2001


Video news releases are an important public relations tactic, but use by television stations is difficult to evaluate. While electronic tracking exists, data are rarely shared or published. This study analyzed proprietary data regarding the use of 14 VNRs, which resulted in 4,245 airings across the U.S. Findings indicate all sizes of markets are likely to use VNRs, but smaller markets are more likely to use longer video segments, and to use them later in the day or days after the initial satellite feed. The most common use was as a voice-over story in an early evening newscast. VNRs associated with children and their safety or health got the greatest number of uses. The results have implications for public relations practitioners who need to make cost-effective decisions regarding tactics to target specific audiences.

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