Your Press Release, Your Story

Have you ever written a press release that no one read? Well, there’s probably a reason for that, and it has something to do with the way reporters’ and editors’ minds work. Here are a few tips to help you write a press release that gets you noticed.
  • Make it story-worthy. The media is not interested in selling your products or services. For that, they want you to buy advertising. So make your press release something reporters want to write more about. Do you have an event coming up, like a ribbon cutting or fundraiser, or did you raise a significant amount for a local charity? Are you sponsoring something community-centric? These make good stories, as well as PR for you.
  • Write a compelling headline. Headlines make the reader, whether it be the media or the general public, care enough to read more. Headlines should include active verbs and give an idea of what the story will be about. An example would be, “Local Business Raises Thousands to Support Disabled Veterans.”
  • Put the facts up front. Editors are going to scan your press release. If they bother to get past the headline, they now want to see the who, what, where, when, why and how. Get all that into the first paragraph.
  • Include a quote or two. Make your story come alive by inserting a quote from an authority figure. The quote can come from the company CEO, a community leader or the head of an organization.
  • Use the proper format. To ensure the media knows your press release is indeed a professional press release, make it actually look like one. There are free press release templates online that can help you.
  • Send the press release to appropriate places. Unless your press release tells a story that has national or international impact, don’t send it to the New York Times. Focus on the local media, and be sure you are sending it to the writer or editor who makes publishing decisions.
Writing a good press release takes research, time and effort. If you need help, All Things Writing, LLC is there. Send inquiries to services@allthingswritingllc.com.
by Katherine Gotthardt, CEO, All Things Writing, LLC
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Katherine Gotthardt, CEO

Katherine Gotthardt, M.Ed., writing concentration, has been writing, editing and teaching for more than twenty years. For the past ten years, she has focused on content development and content marketing for small to mid-size businesses, writing and disseminating material that increases client visibility while supporting their brand. Besides being published in dozens of journals, Katherine has authored five books: Poems from the Battlefield, Furbily-Furld Takes on the World, Approaching Felonias Park, Weaker Than Water and Bury Me Under a Lilac. Learn more about her creative life at www.KatherineGotthardt.com.