Press releases are an inexpensive and effective way of getting your company seen online. Press release writing is a simple process yet some businesses invariably manage to get it wrong. Here are some general press release writing tips as well as information on the correct format and structure. All organizations that are serious about becoming a force should add press releases to their advertising campaign.
At the top of the press release, you must include ‘For Immediate Release’ as well as the date it was issued. The next and possibly most important step is to produce an attention grabbing headline. You must grab readers by the throat and shake them instantly. A dull, unimaginative headline will ensure even the first paragraph of the release will not be read. Keep the headline short too but avoid hyperbole and ensure the headline is representative of the remaining text. Remember, you are also writing for a Press Release Editor who will dump it if it contains a misleading headline. A sub heading is optional.
Press Release: Straight To the Point
You may elect to insert a sentence or two underneath the headline. This would be a quick snapshot of the entire press release. Write this in italics. Otherwise, summarize the content in a relatively succinct opening paragraph with the five ‘W’s utilized:
* Who: The Company who are the subject of the release
* Where: The location of the news event
* When: Time of the event
* What: What are the company offering that is so special
* Why: Why are they releasing this product and why should a customer be interested
Always ensure that the most important information is right at the top. The concept of reeling readers in slowly does not work with press releases. Hit the reader with the most vital information immediately. The idea is to arouse the consumer’s interest and hopefully make them a future customer.
A press release is not the place to sensationalize the product or service being reported. Your mission is to entice the readers without hitting them with the same tired sales spiel they see in articles and websites on a regular basis. Using the release as a vehicle for sales pitches is weak and will not even get past an editor. Use the release to advertise in a different way. Instead of focusing on why the product/service is go great, concentrate on informing the reader why it is an amazing opportunity for them. Explain how the item being reported positively affects them.
Flesh out the information contained in the first paragraph throughout the rest of the text. It is not a good idea to include too much new information on paragraphs 2 and 3. If possible, always include a quote from a respected authority on the topic mentioned in the release. Finally, always enter the company’s full contact information at the bottom of the release.
Some quick tips include keeping it short. No more than 4 paragraphs are necessary with releases over 500 words not recommended. You need to cater to the short attention span of the reader. Also, thoroughly check the release for spelling, grammar and syntax errors of any kind. Nothing ruins your press release’s credibility more than careless mistakes. Finally, ensure that the release is optimized for search engines. There is no point having a world class release if readers cannot find it.
There are thousands of companies worldwide who use this form of advertising but do so incorrectly. A badly written press release can do quite a bit of damage to a company’s reputation, especially if the marketing aspect of it was successful and it was seen by hordes of potential customers and news agencies.
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