How to Stop Paying for your Broadcast Media Clips and Start Getting them for Free

Anyone who has worked in PR knows ordering copies of broadcast media clips from a monitoring company can get expensive fast. At $50-100 a pop, a short broadcast clip can really break a budget. The good news? It’s 2011. You shouldn’t be paying for those broadcast media clips. Take the time to make a minimum investment into the below technology and you’ll never have to pay for those clips again.

Record and Edit Live TV Yourself

In my old office I set us up with a TiVo to record television programming. I wired the TiVo up to a DVD burner and we were able to quickly and easily copy and duplicate DVDs of the coverage we received. Want to take it a step further? You can utilize TiVo’s Desktop for PC (or MAC) to transfer recordings over your network to a computer for easy editing.

While the TiVo is pretty cool and easy to use, my personal favorite product for the job is EyeTV, from Elgato. This product lets you plug your cable signal directly into your Mac. On top of that, it also has a great editing interface built in, which includes the ability to export your edited video into just about any format. Using EyeTV I could record a news clip as it aired live, edit it and have it in an email going out to the boss in under 10 minutes. Yes, 10 minutes. No more waiting a week for that DVD to arrive.

Save Video Off Just About Any Site

Maybe you didn’t know you were getting media coverage. What should you do then? Well, chances are the media outlet will post the video on their website within a day or two. If they do, there are plenty of ways for you to download and save the clip for your private archives. NOTE: You can download it, but it doesn’t mean you can publicly share it or post it to YouTube

For PC users, the easiest tool for the job is CamStudio. CamStudio is a free screen recording program that can capture both the video and audio of a video clip being played on any website. Just drag a box around the video in question, click to record and you’re all set.

For Mac users, my suggestion is iShowU HD. It’s $29.95, but has a great interface and is totally worth the cost. Like CamStudio, you can quickly and easily record any video from any website. Again, just drag a box around the video, select record and that’s it. Looking to save yourself $30? If you’ve got a Mac utilizing Snow Leopard operating system you can use QuickTime to record screen captures for free. More details here.

Capturing Missed Media Coverage
But what if you didn’t record the coverage as it happened AND the media outlet never posted the video to their site? Well, don’t forget to check YouTube! You’d be surprised how many times media coverage finds its way to the video sharing site. The easiest way to download videos from YouTube is via a Firefox add-on. Install an add-on, like my favorite 1-Click YouTube Video Download, and you can quickly and easily download any YouTube video to your computer. If Firefox isn’t your browser of choice, check out this article that outlines 18 ways to download YouTube videos for free.

Conclusion
There’s always a chance that the above info won’t help and a piece of coverage might slip through the cracks. If that’s the case, check out a video monitoring service like VMS or Metro Monitor. But I’m happy to report that by utilizing some of the above info I haven’t had to purchase a single broadcast media clip in over three years! Try it out, save yourself some cash and let me know what you think!

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2 Comments

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2 responses to “How to Stop Paying for your Broadcast Media Clips and Start Getting them for Free

  1. Kyle

    Can you elaborate on your TiVo to DVD setup? I cannot find documentation for exporting TiVo recordings in this fashion.

    • sethodell

      Hi Kyle,

      I use a component out cable plugged from the back of the Tivo and plug it into component in ports on the DVD player. I then set the DVD ready to burn, hit play on the Tivo and then record on the DVD player. Just like you can burn a DVD of something on a TV, I’m instead burning a DVD of something playing live on the Tivo. Does that make sense? I hope I’m explaining it clearly.

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