It’s the most wonderful time of the year… for a press release!
Welcome to November’s training email! This month’s topic comes in handy as we all gear up for the Christmas craziness… but instead of diving under the waves of chaos, here’s how you can rise above it all, and even leverage the end-of-year madness for your business.
It’s right about now that the media is on the hunt for news – so it’s the PERFECT time to write a press release. Don’t know how? Let us help. Here’s your quick and easy guide to writing your first press release:
– Why should they care? Think about who’s on the other end of your story – what kind of media outlet are they? Are they aligned with your industry and the subject you’re writing about? Why would this particular news agency care about your story? And more importantly, why would their audience care? Remember, while you might find your new office cat interesting, chances are ABC’s Landline probably won’t.
– Know your story: If you can’t sum up what your release is about in one sentence, then you don’t know your story. Is it a product launch? Did you win an award? Whatever it is, be able to sum it up in a single line.
– Start with all the facts: You have just a few seconds to convince the journalist this story is worth pursuing. Make the first paragraph punchy with the who, what, when, where, why and how (yay, Year 4 English is still coming in handy).
– Expand: Follow up by expanding on the story with your main points. These should be written in order of importance until you get down the final paragraph which is the least important. The last few lines can include background info about your business, or a little bio to give a backstory to who you are.
– Layout: Keep it to a page. It may a quieter time of year, but journalists are busy and, whether you like to hear this or not, it’s your job to make THIER life easier. The easier and simpler you make it, the more chance they will cover your story!
So… Give it a catchy headline. Ensure the release is dated at the top of the page. And make sure the body of the text is well spaced and easy on the eye. To keep it professional, issue the release as a pdf, not a word document, but make sure all links you include, work.
– Don’t forget your deets: At the bottom of the press release, always include your business and contact details, as well as your website and social media links. If you have professional images/video – be sure to also include links for the media to access, as this also increases your chances of the story being picked up.
DYK? When a news story links back to your website it creates traffic and adds credibility points to your site. This is great for helping to keep your online presence more visible when people google your type of business!
– Quotes: If you’ve always wanted to be quoted in the news, now is your chance! Include a quote that supports the main point of your story. Quotes are also a great way to add interest to the story and position yourself as an expert in the field. (Just make sure the source of the quote is listed).
– Language: Use short sentences and punchy paragraphs (hold the waffle, but bring the sauce). Use vigorous, active language, and always write in the third person. And be sure to proof read! Getting another set of eyes over your release will ensure you aoid mistks (see what we did there?)
And lastly – have fun writing your first press release!
We want you to achieve the best out of your business and marketing activities, so if you’re looking for more great ideas to help with your business, click here to check out all of our latest tips and tricks. Or if you need more help with your PR, get in touch!
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