#PRPROTIP: Why radio is still relevant for great PR returns


Usually when a company starts a PR campaign they have their ideal media win in mind. It may be exposure via a TV interview, a feature piece in their favourite weekend newspaper or an online story that goes viral and significantly increases reach. 

I’m finding more and more that the platform of radio in the media mix can be severely underrated. Depending on the region you’re seeking PR coverage in – radio can be an extremely successful channel to target for awareness, leads and reach. 

Often, radio is viewed as an old-school media channel that reaps little benefit. It’s true that the nature of radio is changing (say hello to digital radio and the rise of online, on-demand stations), but its return-on-investment as a key media channel for your campaigns cannot be understated – you just have to understand the format, and know how to approach the pitch. 

For radio coverage – you’re looking at two forms of potential pick-up: a radio news grab, or a program interview. 

News grabs usually allow for 5-10 seconds of audio about your story, message or service. Maximum. This is due to the format and length of a news bulletin. Grabs in news headlines focus on the pressing, ‘hot-topic’ news of the day – so if you’re pitching to a news journalist, you’ll want the story to be timely.

Being included in the news bulletin of the day is extremely valuable – many people in a rush switch on the hourly news to get a quick summary of the need-to-know topics – and this is where you can cut through, get noticed, and help set the day’s agenda. 

Program interviews are much longer – from 3-5 minutes, up to half an hour for longform interviews (depending on the nature of the program and radio station). I use program interviews to give my clients consistent coverage in their target market – often I can secure a weekly program interview where they offer advice and discuss trends relevant to their industry. I have seen event leads, sales, awareness, online and offline engagements as a result of a consumer tuning in to a program interview.  

Radio allows an audience to hear the personality behind a business or company – it is a very effective and efficient way of helping your audience get to connect with you – and grow to like, know and trust you. 

Radio is not dead – it shouldn’t be discounted in any PR pitch – it’s still relevant, and it’s evolving. You just simply have to understand the potential forms of pick-up, perfect your pitch and realise the inherent value in maximising broadcast coverage for your company.  

Katie Clift

Director | Katie Clift Consulting Pty Ltd | International PR Expert

Follow me via @katieclift or katieclift.com for more #PRProTips on local & international PR every week!

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Katie Clift