When it comes to public relations, great press releases are a must-have. A study found that 88% of journalists find value in press releases. However, with the expansion of technology and increased information overload, it’s important to make your press release stand out amongst the rest.
Here are 5 tips for writing a great press release:
1. Use an attention grabbing headline
We live in a world where random things (like sandwiches) go viral, news cycles last 15 minutes, and everyone is clamoring for attention. Did you know that around 2,000 press releases are sent out every day? That makes it easier for your release to get lost in the mix. Make sure you have a headline that’s engaging to journalists and will entice them to read more.
A good practice to follow when it comes to headlines is that it should be around 7-10 words. This keeps you from overcomplicating it. Remember to be concise but also clear about what your release is about.
2. Put important information at the beginning
Let’s be real… we don’t always read articles or press releases all the way through. Journalists are no different! This is why it’s important to get all of your important information out upfront. Make sure all the important details are laid out in the first one to two paragraphs of the press release.
A great way to cover all your bases is by answering the the Five “W”s (and one “H”) in the beginning of the release. That is: who, what, when, why where and how. Most journalists will read the first sentence and paragraph but they are not likely to read as closely to the end! This also gives journalists the information in one organized spot instead of having the comb through your release to find it.
3. Include strong quotes
Sometimes the best way to relay information is by using a direct quote. Quotes are a great way to integrate information in a more interesting way. When quoting people relevant to your story, make sure it’s something memorable, so don’t use up space quoting something that’s better paraphrased.
CEOs, leaders, and high-profile individuals are the best sources for quotes in a press release. It’s also the perfect way to highlight your leaders as experts in your field and build brand reputation.
4. Keep it short, simple, and social
Most press releases are now 400-500 words and include more embedded photos, links and graphics. Similar to our point about headlines, you want to keep the press release clear and concise throughout.
With the rise of online newsrooms and all-digital content, making a press release web-accessible is crucial. It also provides journalists with more access to information and leaves them better prepared to cover your story. Providing them a link to a photo gallery, for example, makes it easier for them to find a photo instead of digging through the internet to find one.
5. Link to more information
Don’t forget to link to your organization! Include links to your website, social media accounts, and more contact information so that the information doesn’t just end with your press release. If you want journalists to get in contact with you, give them the resources to! Providing links to your website also gives more information about your organization and what you stand for.
Hopefully these tips will help you craft strong press releases for your business. But if you still need help with media pitching, that’s what we’re here for. Reach out to learn more about our public relations services or see some of the articles we’ve placed in the past.