December 1, 19XX
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
DO YOU KNOW WHAT THE LETTERS U-S-O STAND FOR? THEY STAND FOR THE
UNITED SERVICES ORGANIZATION...A GROUP OF HARD WORKING MEN AND
WOMEN WHO MAKE A HOME AWAY FROM HOME FOR MEMBERS OF THE
MILITARY VOLUNTEER WORKERS MAN THEIR STATIONS ALL OVER THE WORLD
IN AN EFFORT TO KEEP MORALE HIGH. NO MATTER HOW NEAR OR FAR FROM
HOME...THERES ALWAYS A U-S-O CENTER NEARBY. THESE CENTERS OFFER
ENTERTAINMENT OF EVERY DESCRIPTION...FROM PING PONG TO FREE
BROADWAY SHOWS. THE U-S-O IS INDEED YOUR HOME AWAY FROM HOME.
# # #
Figure 13-5.30-second information spot announcement.
you may be allotted. Figure 13-5 shows the informa-
go, see, take, try, get, visit, ask, call, be and buy. Be
tion spot announcement.
SPOT WRITING TECHNIQUES
In writing either a selling or information spot
announcement, you should remember the following
four techniques that will pay dividends in quality:
1. Plot the pitch carefully. Before you put a word
on paper, you have to know the type of audience you
want to reach. If the audience is in the lower income
bracket, gear the spot to the special needs and wants of
this group. One approach could be the economic
security angle; another is the get-ahead-in-the-world
appeal. On the other hand, audiences in small rural
towns might find the travel theme exciting and
interesting. Spot writers must study prospective
audiences if they are to be successful at communicating
2. Look for new target audiences. Although the
stress in writing may be recruiting, you should be
prepared to write spots that will sell the public on
attending a command public visitation, a parade or a
demonstration. These special events appeal to many
audiences. Some spots might be directed toward fathers,
children, teen-agers or even to mothers in the audience.
3. Develop a direct, personal writing approach.
Even though the audience may consist of several
thousand people, the copy is directed at one person.
Make that individual feel that the message is personal.
Address the listener in terms of you, youve, your
Canal youre. Always refer to the listener in singular
form and in a friendly manner.
4. Select words carefully. Write spots in the active
voice with such positive and colorful verbs as follows:
conversational, but avoid slang. Keep your words
simple, and do not try to impress the listener with an
extensive vocabulary. Speak to the listener in the
language that person knows. You also should avoid
special military terms and abbreviations that are
unfamiliar to the listener.
Format and Preparation
Whether you are writing a spot announcement for
an NBS detachment or a local commercial station, you
should adhere to the following general rules concerning
format and preparation:
1. Follow the appropriate style. Write your spot
following the style guide of the station. A station
manager might reject your spot if it is not in the style his
announcers are used to reading.
2. Submit clean copy. All announcements you
submit to radio stations should be free of errors.
3. Submit the proper number of copies. Check to
see how many copies of an announcement each station
4. Meet deadlines. If a station manager asks you
to have a spot at the station by a given time, do not miss
the deadline. Your violating this rule is the best way for
you to keep your copy from ever reaching the airwaves.
Timing the Spot
Timing is extremely important in spot writing. On
commercial stations, you will be competing with other
public service agencies for free air time. Naturally, a
station can allot only so much time for public service