Congratulations! Your business has some exciting news you are eager to share. Maybe you have a new product that is finally ready to be released. Or perhaps you are about to open a new location and want to announce the grand opening. Whatever the news is, sending out a press release may be the next step to take.
A press release can be a useful tool for promoting your business. If done right, it can attract journalists to your story; this, in turn, can lead to increased media coverage and new customers. If done wrong, the press release could go from an email inbox to a trash folder in ten seconds or less.
Formats, templates, and samples of press releases are available online. That said, these alone are often not enough. Journalists frequently receive more than 300 emails a day. If you want your press release to be seen, you need to stand out.
Follow these eight simple pointers to help get your press release noticed.
1. Start with a strong headline.
If your press release appeared on the front page of a newspaper, would the headline catch your attention? If the answer is no, then it needs work. The headline alone may not be enough to get your press release accepted, but it is certainly enough to get it deleted.
2. Don’t bury the lead.
Assume the journalist won’t read past your first few lines. Let them know the vital information right at the beginning. If you bury the lead, then you’ve concealed your press release.
3. Stick to the facts.
Keep it readable and avoid artistic writing. Let the facts stand up for themselves. Quantifiable data is far more convincing than fancy wordplay.
4. Spelling and grammar matter.
Grammar mistakes in a press release come off as unprofessional and can remove credibility from your work. Read the release out loud to help catch mistakes. Remember to have others proofread your work as well.
5. Incorporate interesting quotes.
Include a few quotes from working employees to add in a personal touch. The quotes should be insightful, honest, and devoid of technical details or business jargon. Keep in mind that journalists may use these quotes word-for-word when they write their articles.
6. Include your name, phone number, and email.
A great press release may inspire a journalist to reach out for more information. If your contact information is missing, you may have lost that potential article. Remember to include working and up-to-date contact details.
7. Keep it short and sweet.
The press release should be restricted to one page. Although two are acceptable, one is better. If your press release is too long, reduce it down to the essential information.
8. Check out the website!
A great press release will have the journalist itching to learn more. Don’t make them work for it. Include a link where they can find additional information. Directing them to your company website is a great way to keep them invested.
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