When a radio spot runs a full 60 seconds, sometimes your first word or two and last word or two can become lost in the spot that comes before or after yours, or may actually be slightly cut off. I’ve been told that in an effort to combat that, many producers will make sure to add a tiny bit of space before and after the spot, thus making the spot actually 59 ½ seconds long, with a quarter second of silence in front and back.
The problem? At the radio station, they generally ignore this space and simply cut to the very beginning of your sound file and to the end. Thus you still run the risk of losing the beginning and end of your spot, and in this case, you’ve lost a half second for no real reason.
This is why you will often hear some sort of sound effect at the beginning and/or end of the spot. Or you might hear a tiny bit of music at the beginning and end of the spot, even when there is no music (bed) under the actual voice over.
One suggestion would be to talk with the people at the stations you buy time with and ask them how they handle things and for their suggestions.
Photo by Leeooh