EFFECTIVE PRESS RELEASES
Even in the age of digital media and social media opportunities such as
blogs, Facebook, Twitter, and LInkedin, press releases are still an
outstanding tool for putting your business or organization in front of clients and
the public. They should be a regular part of your marketing and public
relations efforts.

Effective press releases do more than just generate news coverage for your
organization. They tell the media and the public who you are and what your
organization is about. They also keep the focus on the information you want to
convey, and can help shape your public image.

Here are some of the basics…

  • Keep it short. A page to a page and a half, except in an extreme
    circumstance.
  • Keep it focused. Stick to the main reason for the release and avoid
    extraneous information.
  • Who, What, When, Where, Why and How. The most important thing
    reporters want to know is Why is this important, and Why do people
    need to know about this? Put that information near the top.
  • Avoid creative prose. Lean toward a formal tone and stick to the facts.
  • Distill technical or research information. Help the media understand it so
    they can better explain it to the public. Give examples of how the
    technology or research benefits or helps consumers, homeowners,
    athletes, automobile safety, etc.
  • Go easy on the numbers (unless you’re reporting survey results).
    Round them and include only the most important figures.
  • Use a Note to Editors at the end of the release for special instructions, i.
    e. interview availabilities, location, etc.
  • Think outside the box in terms of the important information to put at the
    beginning of the release. What’s important within the walls of the
    organization may not be important to the public.


THE BOTTOM LINE

Media response to a press release is dependent on several factors such as
the overall importance of your announcement, other news that is occurring at
the time, the time of your press conference, event, etc.

Send your release to every local and regional newspaper, radio and
television station. Include the smaller daily and weekly newspapers, and all of
the radio and t.v. stations. .

Put a headline above the first paragraph. Use capital letters to indicate when
the information can be released. Put the date the release is sent, name of the
person to contact, and their phone number.

Again, this is the age of digital media and social media... be sure to post your
press release to your business or organization's website. Tweet it, if you're on
Twitter and post it to your blog, Facebook or Linkedin pages, if you have one
or both of those as well. It'll take a few extra minutes, but when you do, you'll
be taking your media relations efforts and moving them into the marketing and
public relations realms, as well.


Updated on 8/3/10


Related Articles:

The Key to Getting Press Coverage
Shattering P.R. Myths
See examples of media coverage
we've helped
Our Clients obtain, by
writing good press releases.


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Effective Press Releases