Why Press Releases Are Important
10 Tips To Writing A Killer Press Release
All the world’s a stage, And all the men and women merely players;[sic] but in order for people to become aware of your plans a press release is the ultimate tool. A press release is an official release to new outlets providing information on your endeavor.
Being newsworthy is not an easy thing in the modern twenty four hour cycle but it is also not as difficult as you may believe. Although journalism has become infotainment in many aspects, they still need leads in order to write the content people consume everyday. It is your job to create a press release that garners attention.
Everything you do is not a press worthy, no matter how many facebook likes or retweets your last comment received. News is not just events that those close to you find interesting. If you do not know that many of your friends spare your feelings then you have yet to realize the truth, most people really do not give a damn if you finally finished your Luke Cage binge on Netflix.
Use Tools Properly
A press release is a tool that companies, people, churches, writers, attention seeking celebrities use to raise awareness. Learn to present your information in a way that appeals to others. Newsworthy can be difficult, not impossible. You can find a list here to give you an idea of newsworthy events according to ereleases, an online press release distribution service provider.
Do not let the various ways services refer to a press release. Other names include: news release, media release, press statement, or urgent release. The rise of television gave birth to broadcast releases. The internet fuels the explosion of video releases, recorded communication directed at members of the news media for the purpose of announcing something ostensibly newsworthy, according to Wikipedia.
Keep It Simple Stupid. That is the oldest acronym in the world of writing. A press release is not a literary exercise full of metaphors and fluff. It is a concise telling of information to provide the bare bones of a story.
The more you convey in as little words as possible, the better chance you have of being contacted by a party wanting to tell your story to the world. Consider your press release the bait on your hook that you are casting into a sea of hungry journalist jumping like fish from the water.
The bait on your hook may be the story they are looking for to be their next big story. To help you understand how to create a press release that journalist will bite.
Anatomy of A Great Press Release
- One page is best — and two is the maximum
- Headlines and subheads matter
- Lead with the story, not the brand.
- Lead with the why
- Have a newsworthy story
- Write it like a reporter would write it
- Get right to the point in the first paragraph
- Include hard numbers
- Make it grammatically flawless
The 5 W’s
The 5 W’s are the DNA of a great journalism. Who. What. When. Why. Where. Each W covers an essential aspect of the story that helps people, in the context of this story, reporters understand why they should write the story. By providing the essential bones to a story or lack of bones is the difference between getting media coverage and not receiving anything.
It has been a long time since I was writing articles for my college newspaper. At one point in my time at the University of Missouri Kansas City I had aspirations to be a journalist. My journalism professor was always stressing the most important aspect of a news story are the same for a great press release.
Patience and Practice
It takes time to learn how to craft a good press release, because I have sent dozens post politics with no reply but that does not mean I am giving up. It means I had to take a step back to evaluate what I was doing wrong.
The process of learning to write a good press release is an exercise any small business person should undertake, at least until they can afford to hire a public relations firm. A very important part of press releases is not just sending them out on news wires or bombarding the inbox of random journalist.
It is an extra step, but take time to build relationships with reporters writing stories covering your industry. Do not send your press release about your new app to a fashion reporter. It shows a lack of respect. Worse, it shows that you are not professional enough to do research. If you reach out in a genuine fashion on a consistent basis you may get a response. Remember, it is your job to make your news stand out.
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By Jonas Hughes