News desks are inundated with press releases on a daily basis. And, unsurprisingly, those that are created and distributed for breaking news purposes tend to take precedence. So, what’s going to make yours stand out from the crowd?
We’ve listed five of our own quick wins here. In a world where grabbing attention seems to get more challenging by the day, these copywriting tips are sure to make your press release pack a punch.
What is press release writing?
Unlike those announcement articles that you’d typically put on your own website, press releases are used as a publicity tool to inform the media of newsworthy stories or events, and net you some brand exposure while they’re at it. Sometimes, press releases are also designed to respond to ‘negative press’ and often require a strong strategy with a quick turnaround.
Now more than ever, brands are finding out just how important press releases are when it comes to shaping their image. With the omnipresence of social media and review websites, the public has much more freedom to comment on your organisation. Sharing your news, your way, through trusted sources is a great opportunity to carve out your brand’s narrative on the world stage.
How do I write a press release that makes waves?
There are a number of fundamentals to include in your press release that will ensure you incorporate key information and have a solid foundation to create your content upon:
- Your logo and contact information
- Headline and subtitle (summary sentence)
- Release date
- Introduction and body copy (including quotes if relevant)
- Boilerplate (an ‘about us’ paragraph providing a top-level overview of your organisation)
As for writing a press release that will get your brand’s story noticed? You’ll need to take things a step further…
1. Find the hook
Before crafting a press release, first consider the angle you’re going to take. The news story itself must be of value to your target audience, but it’s important to remember that it must also be attractive to the media audiences you’ve selected. Highlight the angle you’ve opted for within the press release, and make sure you showcase it in any emails or phone calls when you’re pitching the piece to news outlets.
2. Choose a snappy headline
Mirroring your chosen angle with a punchy headline is vital if you want to successfully grab the attention of editors and reporters (who spend a lot of time sifting through press releases every day). In some instances, using a statistic is a sure way to make an impact quickly. After all, stats have the ability to lead many newsworthy stories – particularly developing ones.
3. Include direct quotes and images
Adding direct quotes from any relevant sources or individuals involved in the story enables journalists to take their own angle and adds authenticity. Likewise, quality images matter! Audiences love to see visual representations of any story, and they’re much more likely to engage with it and remember its purpose.
4. Enlist your fine-tooth comb
When you’re about ready to hit ‘send’, dig out your fine-tooth comb and proofread your press release thoroughly, editing where necessary. You’ll be surprised where you may have missed the mark along the way, especially if you’re close to the story that you’ve written about. You may also want to alter the angle for each publication you’re sending the press release to – local newspapers often share ‘local interest’ news stories, for example, so tailor the spin accordingly.
5. Make the journalist’s life easy-peasy
Journalists and reporters appreciate it when their life is made simple for them. So, as well as giving them the angle of the press release on a plate, be sure to provide supporting material and the contact details of any sources of further information.
Got a story to tell?
We consistently craft engaging content for countless marketing purposes, and press releases are just one example. Our team will get your brand’s message positioned where it deserves to be, mirroring your tone and ethos. Whatever your industry, if you’re a fast-growing company looking for professional content marketing, get in touch with us.