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  • Writer's pictureThom Casey

A look inside early-morning live TV news coverage for clients

Two TV news video cameras pointed to the left of the photo.

There are often days where Ceisler Media staff members wake up early – very, very early – for client work, especially when it comes to morning TV coverage.

In April this year, we worked with Pennsylvania Family Support Alliance (PFSA) in support of its annual blue ribbon-flag planting event in Harrisburg, where the client was speaking with several news stations as early as 5:30 a.m.

April is National Child Abuse Prevention Month, dedicated to raising awareness of and prevention of child abuse. It’s an important issue: there were 5,036 substantiated cases of child abuse, 58 substantiated fatalities, and 136 substantiated near fatalities, according to the Pennsylvania Department of Human Services’ Child Protective Services 2021 Annual Report.

PFSA is the state leader in providing education, support and training programs to make Pennsylvania safe for children. And, on April 4, PFSA hosted the flag-planting event on State Street in Harrisburg and honored four Pennsylvanians who have gone above and beyond the call of duty to protect children.

Here’s a recap of our early morning, which included meeting with Harrisburg-area news stations to promote this important event and cause:

4 a.m.: Roll out of bed, rub eyes, grumble.

4:45 a.m.: Get in the car, chug coffee, yawn.

5:15 a.m.: Arrive on-site.

5:20 a.m.: Realize you’re on the wrong side of the Capitol. Walk to right side while taking photos of the Capitol, lit up in blue.

5:30 a.m.: Find the client doing an interview with FOX 43, take behind-the-scenes photos.

5:35 a.m.: Inform client next interview is at 6 a.m. Get on Twitter to see advance coverage and to find out where WGAL NBC 8 went after arriving.

5:36 a.m.: Walk to office, see the sun starting to come up. Notice it’s getting colder, which you find weird because the sun is rising.

5:45 a.m.: Sit down at desk. Take a deep breath. Resume Twitter searching. Look at photos you took, curse yourself for not being a better photographer. Remind yourself that you’re not a professional photographer.

5:50 a.m.: Leave office, walk back down to the Capitol. Make sure to go to the right location this time.

5:57 a.m.: Arrive at the right location, give yourself a mental self-high five.

6 – 6:45 a.m.: Watch client do back-to-back interviews. Notice it’s getting colder as the sun rises, wonder if everything you learned in science class is a lie. Decide to ponder later because you need to get photos.

6:47 a.m.: Call WGAL to find out whether they’re coming back, indulge in more Twitter and clips searching.

6:55 a.m.: Grab client for 7 a.m. interview with FOX 43. Trust science again after it feels warmer. Get more photos.

7 a.m.: Client does interview, you get photos.

7:15 a.m.: Volunteers start to appear. Client asks about next interview. Coordinate with WGAL about talking to client. Tell client the next interview is in 15 minutes.

7:30 a.m.: Client speaks to CBS 21, followed by FOX 43. You get photos.

7:45 a.m.: Realize the day is only getting started.

7:50 a.m.: Client talks to WGAL. You get photos again.

8 a.m.: Events start to get in full swing. Take big yawn. Rub your eyes. You wouldn’t want to be anywhere else.

Pictured (clockwise from top left): The front of the Pennsylvania State Capitol building lit up in blue for National Child Abuse Prevention Month; PFSA president and CEO, Angela Liddle (right) talks to FOX43’s Tyler Hatfield; Liddle and CBS 21’s Megan Magensky discuss the flag planting event and awards ceremony; and Liddle talks to WGAL'S Kate Merriman (obscured on left) about PFSA's April 4 events.

Through our work, we were able to generate the following results for Pennsylvania Family Support Alliance (PFSA):

  • Coverage on all four major Harrisburg news stations

  • Live spots on CBS 21 from 5:07 a.m. to 12:11 p.m. and on FOX 43 from 5:39 a.m. to 9:05 a.m.

  • Reports from outlets out of the Harrisburg market, including outlets from Montgomery, Huntingdon, Indiana and Tioga counties, reached a total audience of approximately 382.3K

Waking up at 4 a.m. is not fun, but I’d do it every day to get results like these for a client.


Thom Casey is a Senior Account Executive in Ceisler Media's Harrisburg Office.


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