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How to Write a Public Service Announcement

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The Word Factory's easy-to-use strategy for writing better public service announcements for radio. Download the worksheet: https://ttms.box.com/s/0rfahnolcekwxnmcf1atrm2n00jd8gey

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How to Write a Public Service Announcement

  1. 1. How to Write a PSA a strategy for writing short
  2. 2. • 93% of U.S. adults listen to AM/FM radio • 58% of all listening goes to just one station, the listener's favorite Radio listening is also consistent year round, with a very high reach and frequent usage among average listeners (5 out of seven days per week tuned in) Why PSAs Belong in Your Marketing Mix © 2018 by Teaching That Makes Sense, Inc. All rights reserved. Learn more at www.thewordfactory.com/our-blog
  3. 3. • Reach a targeted audience • Deliver messaging that’s less distracted • Improve resonance and recall of campaigns • Inform and educate on issues • Promote events/sell tickets • Solicit donations © 2018 by Teaching That Makes Sense, Inc. All rights reserved. Learn more at www.thewordfactory.com/our-blog Why PSAs Belong in Your Marketing Mix
  4. 4. But writing short can be hard. :(
  5. 5. easier to write harder to read and understand
  6. 6. harder to write easier to read, easier to understand
  7. 7. • Makes writing easier and faster • Prioritizes most valuable content • Keeps us on topic • Makes reviewing faster The Idea-Details Strategy™ a strategy for writing short © 2018 by Teaching That Makes Sense, Inc. All rights reserved. Learn more at www.thewordfactory.com/our-blog
  8. 8. • Sets the one most important thing the listener needs to know • Is a complete sentence or question • Reflects the main message point The Main Idea © 2018 by Teaching That Makes Sense, Inc. All rights reserved. Learn more at www.thewordfactory.com/our-blog
  9. 9. • Establish the must-have information • Empower action • Answer the listeners questions or objections The Key Details © 2018 by Teaching That Makes Sense, Inc. All rights reserved. Learn more at www.thewordfactory.com/our-blog
  10. 10. The Idea-Details Strategy™ IDEA: The most important thing listeners need to know DETAILS: The crucial info listeners need from you One complete sentence that might even be the first or last line of your PSA. A bullet list of details that answers some or all of these questions: • WHO • WHAT • WHERE • WHEN • WHY • HOW © 2018 by Teaching That Makes Sense, Inc. All rights reserved. Learn more at www.thewordfactory.com/our-blog
  11. 11. Details for an Event PSA © 2018 by Teaching That Makes Sense, Inc. All rights reserved. Learn more at www.thewordfactory.com/our-blog • Host, including big-name emcees • Type of event: gala, fun-run, lecture, auction, etc. • Date(s) and time(s) event takes place • Location • Short description of the event and how it ties to your mission or supports your beneficiaries/clients • Concise contact information (a URL, phone number or social media page) that are easily read and remembered
  12. 12. The Idea-Details Strategy™ © 2018 by Teaching That Makes Sense, Inc. All rights reserved. Learn more at www.thewordfactory.com/our-blog IDEA: The most important thing readers should know. DETAILS: The examples, explanations and evidence that support your main idea. One complete sentence that might even be the first or last line of your PSA. A bullet list of details EXAMPLE: a familiar model EXPLANATION: a definition or process EVIDENCE: a data point, fact or tangible measure
  13. 13. Details for an Issue PSA © 2018 by Teaching That Makes Sense, Inc. All rights reserved. Learn more at www.thewordfactory.com/our-blog • Examples give listeners something to relate to and helps us understand. • Explanations give us important context that deepens understanding. • Evidence is most useful for people who are ready to believe you. One strong data point can be effective as an opening for your PSA.
  14. 14. Calls to Action tell people what to think, feel or do next THINK/FEEL: The beliefs and emotions you want listeners have DO: The things you want listeners to do Try to make these “I” statements from the listeners’ POV, like: • I didn’t realize this • This seems like a good idea • I want to be a part of this List simple actions the listener should take, like: • Donate via our website • Brake for people in crosswalks • Sign up for AIDSWalk © 2018 by Teaching That Makes Sense, Inc. All rights reserved. Learn more at www.thewordfactory.com/our-blog Derived from the Content-Purpose-Audience Strategy™
  15. 15. © 2018 by Teaching That Makes Sense, Inc. All rights reserved. Learn more at www.thewordfactory.com/our-blog Pre-Writing & Drafting 1. Take 5 minutes to fill out the Idea- Details & Call to Action t-charts 2. Make sure you’ve got the right content 3. Take 5 minutes to draft. 4. Start with your main idea 5. Turn your bullets into sentences 6. End with a call to action 7. Don’t worry about length right now
  16. 16. Now take a closer look at your work to make sure you: • Included only the ideas and details you really need • Used words that are easy to say out loud • Built a logical flow from start to finish • Created a voice that’s appropriate for your audience © 2018 by Teaching That Makes Sense, Inc. All rights reserved. Learn more at www.thewordfactory.com/our-blog Revising, Part I
  17. 17. Next, do some more revising. 1. Count your words. 2. Cut till you have about 80. Count each word in a URL (thewordfactory.com = 4 words) 3. Read it out loud to hear how it sounds. 4. Make a few more changes. 5. Read aloud and see how close to 30 seconds you are. Cut as necessary. © 2018 by Teaching That Makes Sense, Inc. All rights reserved. Learn more at www.thewordfactory.com/our-blog Revising, Part II
  18. 18. How was the process? Let’s hear some PSAs! © 2018 by Teaching That Makes Sense, Inc. All rights reserved. Learn more at www.thewordfactory.com/our-blog
  19. 19. • Blog posts • Short Facebook and LinkedIn posts • YouTube descriptions • Tweets • Instagram and Pinterest Captions • Memos • Landing page content © 2018 by Teaching That Makes Sense, Inc. All rights reserved. Learn more at www.thewordfactory.com/our-blog Other Uses for this Strategy
  20. 20. © 2018 by Teaching That Makes Sense, Inc. All rights reserved. Learn more at www.thewordfactory.com/our-blog Questions?
  21. 21. @word_factory margotlester @beabetterwriter

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