If you want to share the latest news about your company, spread awareness about your brand or improve your image, then a press release is a great way to do so. It is an effective way to relay information to the media, ultimately reaching the public which is your main goal. You want to drive interest and get noticed in order for your company and brand to be seen and heard.
It isn’t hard to publish multiples press releases, however if you’re writing several every week, it’s easy to fall into the rut of churning out the same old run-of-the-mill content. Therefore, you need to know how to make them effective and exciting for your audience; to captivate their attention and get your point across in a clear and concise manner.
That being said, if you’re writing press releases then chances are you’re already a great writer, so here are five tips to ensure your work will stand out from the crowd when it comes to efficacy, structure, technique and protocol:
- Make sure your story is newsworthy
Before you begin writing a press release, ask yourself the following questions:
- If I put myself in the shoes of someone who isn’t part of this company or brand, would I still be interested to read about this announcement or topic?
- Is this story relevant AND would the information in it benefit my target audience and make them want to finish reading the article (rather than skim reading through it or skipping past it entirely)?
If you have answered an honest “yes” to these questions, then that’s a great starting point! If not, take some time to think and then put together something which is worthwhile reporting. Otherwise, you run the risk of very quickly losing people’s interest as well as your credibility as a brand or journalist.
- Create a structured plan
Journalists receive hundreds of emails and press releases every day and so you need to make sure that yours is clear, to the point and succinct. No one will read a 1000-word article from start to finish! The recommended length of a press release is 300-600 words, which is around three or four short paragraphs with a few relevant images. Start with a structured outline of the story you want to get across by writing two to three bullet points for each paragraph. This helps you have your points ready for when you finally fill out the paragraphs, keeping your points as the main focus.
- Use quotes or references to support your story
Including quotes from the CEO of the company or a professional who knows what they are talking about is a great way to add extra credibility to your press release! It makes people feel like they are being given information straight from the source itself, hence making it far more reliable and trustworthy in their eyes.
Reminder: Don’t use technical language or buzz words in your quotes as you want your reader to understand you and take you seriously.
- Do your research and find out who to pitch to and where
The media landscape is constantly evolving, making it difficult sometimes to keep up with who is working (or writing) where. Although you accumulate your own media contact list over time, keeping it up to date can get overwhelming. A trustworthy media contact database or website that is regularly reviewed and updated is a game changer. Find one that works for you and make sure you have access to the regional, global and industry publications that are relevant to you.
- Go above and beyond
Don’t think your job is done once you’ve sent your press release out! Make the extra effort to reach out to journalists personally via email and develop a relationship with them. Share your new release with a brief summary to help them get a quick idea of what your story is about and spark their interest to read more. Include high-resolution images or links to videos so that they have all the information they need from the get-go.
Remember these tips when you’re working as they will really help you and are essential when writing a successful press release. Good luck and get writing!
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