12 Tips to Writing an Attention-Grabbing Press Release

Posted on: September 17, 2014 by: DedePerkins

How to Get Attention Newspaper Headline Exposure1. The “So, what?” Test

The first tip is the most obvious – make sure your press release is interesting, has value, and is not just a glorified advertisement for your business. Sounds simple, yet many, many press releases don’t pass this test.

 

2. Timely, Newsworthy Content

Is your press release timely and newsworthy? If it is, you increase the chance that news outlets will help distribute your message, or even better, assign reporters to write a story about you, your organization or event.

 

3. Catchy Title

Media outlets are flooded with press releases. If you want to stand out, make sure you have an interesting title. Brainstorm ideas that hook your reader – give them information that will make their life better in some way – and lead with it.

 

4. Lead With The Facts

The opening paragraph should state the facts: who, what, where, when, and why.

 

5. Supporting Your Lead – Interesting Details, Facts & Figures

Second and third paragraphs round out the information. This is where you give perspective – a (very) short history or story – that hopefully draws the reader into your message.

 

6. Include a Quote or Two

Quotes personalize your press release and let readers “hear” from people who are involved with or benefit from whatever it is you’re writing about.

 

7. Contact Information

In the top left corner of your press release include the following information:

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Contact: Your Name & Title

Your Phone #

Your Email Address

 

8. Additional Information

Close with a link, email address or phone number so interested parties can get additional information.

 

9. One Page, Two at the Most

Ideally, your press release will be 3-5 paragraphs and will fit on one page, two pages at the most. Be concise!

 

10. Perfect Grammar

Proof your release before sending it out. Use a spelling and grammar checker if you have one. Ask a co-worker, friend or family member to read your release before distribution. You may not notice or care about proper grammar, but trust me, many, many people do.

 

11. Conversational and Informative Tone

This one’s pretty obvious, but it’s very important. Don’t try to impress people with industry lingo or tech-speak. Write as if you’re speaking to a colleague. Be professional but conversational so that your readers will connect with you and your message.

 

12. Appropriate Distribution

After you write your press release, distribute it to the right channels. Take time to figure out the local, regional, and national media outlets that share your market, cover your product, field, or industry. Don’t forget to distribute online by posting on your own website or blog and social media profiles, if appropriate.

 

Dede Perkins has over 25 years of writing, branding and marketing experience with businesses and non-profit organizations.

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