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PEPSI VNRs SET VIDEO NEWS RELEASE VIEWERSHIP RECORDS

 NEW YORK, July 6 /PRNewswire/ -- Two of the video news releases distributed via satellite to television news by Medialink, the video public relations network, for Pepsi Cola during the recent Diet Pepsi tampering hoaxes set new Medialink records for documented viewership, reaching at least 186 million and 95 million viewers respectively, according to preliminary usage reporting.
 The previous Medialink VNR viewership record was set in 1990 when more than 82 million viewers saw Star Kist's "Dolphin-Safe Tuna" VNR.
 Produced and distributed to television newsrooms the same day, the VNRs were all shot and edited for Pepsi Cola by Robert Chang Productions, while station notification, usage monitoring and satellite transmission were handled by Medialink.
 "Because the story was breaking so quickly in electronic media, we needed to speak quickly and in headlines," said Andrew Giangola, manager/public affairs, Pepsi Cola. "We knew that Americans are essentially fair and would make a national judgment based on the facts. Medialink enabled us to share the facts each night on the evening news, and ultimately prove that the so-called Pepsi scare was merely a vicious hoax."
 "Pepsi's decision to tell its story to consumers and key audiences like investors and distributors as the story was unfolding was a classic example of video public relations," said Laurence Moskowitz, president of Medialink. "In crisis management situations the use of video and satellite technology is vital. The impact Pepsi made on the eyes and ears of the American public was simply stunning."
 The first Pepsi VNR -- the record setter -- was produced on June 15 in Philadelphia and transmitted to Medialink in New York for distribution to interested stations that afternoon and evening. It contained exclusive b-roll of Pepsi Cola bottling procedures and quality control, and an interview with a Pepsi plant manager. Medialink monitoring -- relying primarily on Nielsen Media Research's electronic encoding -- issued a preliminary report confirming 182 million viewers from 1,322 airings.
 The second VNR, produced the next day in New York and at Pepsi headquarters in Somers, N.Y., contained a report to American consumers from Craig Weatherup, president and chief executive of Pepsi Cola of North America. The VNR included additional bottling plant footage. Preliminary results confirm this VNR was seen by at least 71 million viewers from 511 airings nationwide.
 The third VNR, produced in New York on June 17, contained surveillance camera footage from a retail outlet in Colorado showing a suspect allegedly tampering with a can of Diet Pepsi, and included pertinent comments from Weatherup. Preliminary results have this VNR being seen by at least 95 million viewers from 800 airings, the second- most-seen VNR in Medialink history.
 The fourth VNR, produced and distributed on June 19 and 20, featured footage of a full-page ad placed in newspapers nationwide informing the public that the alleged tampering was a series of hoaxes, and thanking the public for its support, as well as an interview with Mr. Weatherup. It was seen by at least 13 million viewers on 106 stations.
 Medialink's operations staff continuously alerted station and network newsroom computer systems to the status and content of the upcoming feeds via the high-speed Medialink/AP Express newswire, adding story content details and satellite transmission information as it became available from Chang and from Medialink's operations desk.
 Elements of the VNRs aired nationwide each night on the major network evening and morning newscasts and local news programs from New York to California. Several of the network newsfeeds recorded the VNRs from Medialink's satellite transmission and re-transmitted them.
 Medialink's services include video news release and public service announcement distribution to television newsrooms, distribution and coordination of satellite media tours and live broadcast events, and technical coordination of internal and external video and audio conferences. Its overall coverage reaches more than 800 newsrooms in the United States and throughout Europe. Based in New York, Medialink has full-service offices in Los Angeles, Chicago, Washington, D.C., and European headquarters in London.
 Robert Chang Productions is a New York-based full service video production company serving the advertising, corporate communications and public relations industries.
 -0- 7/6/93
 /CONTACT: Nick Peters, vice president-operations of Medialink, 212-682-8300/


CO: Medialink; Pepsi Cola ST: New York IN: ADV SU:

SM-OS -- NY050 -- 8739 07/06/93 15:36 EDT
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Date:Jul 6, 1993
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