Although a significant portion of the media today is strictly digital, press releases have a place in the electronic age. What is a press release? Why is one needed? How should a person write this release to ensure they get maximum exposure? The following guide answers these questions and more.
What is a Press Release?
Press releases are not solely for general marketing or advertising. This communication will go out to influencers, the local media, and other media outlets. The communication may be about anything related to the company. It might highlight the launch of a new product or announce the release of an album or film. Recipients may use the communication as received or expand on the information provided while using the press release for background material.
Why Are Press Releases Needed?
Press releases help build the reputation of a brand, expand media coverage, and boost a company’s or individual’s online presence. People often overlook this valuable tool, but it can be used for many events.
Companies often use it to announce the launch of a new product or the expansion of their existing organization. Artists and actors send out press releases when they have a film or album coming out, and a non-profit might send out a release when they receive a substantial donation.
However, the release could announce a contest or competition. It might be used to share a new addition to the team or to announce a staff member’s retirement. A company might even use a press release to report on something related to a major holiday.
The ideas are truly endless. Regardless of what the press release is about, it will help spread information, build relationships, and further the reach of the brand.
Creating an Effective Press Release
Before writing a press release, learn which news sources are the best in the industry. In addition, find influencers who may be able to spread the word about the release. Make the goal to build relationships rather than selling the product or brand. Once this information has been gathered, keep it readily available. It will be of great help in the future when new releases are created.
Things to Avoid
Don’t write about a non-story. People will view this as a waste of their time and become frustrated with the person providing the release. Never share false information or overstate credentials. Be honest throughout the press release. Finally, don’t become upset if the press release doesn’t receive the desired level of coverage. Determine what went wrong and where changes need to be made for future releases.
The Contents of the Release
Create a short and snappy headline that leaves the reader wanting to know more. This headline must capture the reader’s attention and draw them in. Once they begin reading, share the information they need to know in the introduction. Leave the details for later. Again, the goal is to leave them wanting to know more so they will continue reading.
Share the story behind the release. Provide information on who, what, where, and when. Add personality to the release by sharing quotes from the major players. Not only does this add substance to the release, but it also provides an opportunity for the individual to share their passion.
Finish the release by sharing what they have learned. Highlight important points already addressed in the release, and consider providing a call to action. Follow up with administrative details in the final paragraphs.
The final two sections of the press release should share contact details. This ensures members of the press can contact the company for additional information. Finish up with a boilerplate, which is nothing more than a short description of the business.
Sharing the Press Release
Don’t limit yourself when sharing the press release. Thanks to the digital age, doing so has never been easier. Local publications are good places to distribute this information, and many companies also share the release with national publications.
Don’t overlook publications specific to the industry and social media influencers. It never hurts to share information with people. However, focus your efforts on those who are most likely to want and use the information.
A press release is a valuable tool for any marketer. Today, many press releases are distributed electronically to reach a broader audience faster and easier. While this works for most releases, if you have a story of local interest, don’t hesitate to hand deliver the release. This will help it stand out from the many other communications the local media gets daily.
Continue sharing releases when new things happen with the business or individual, as the media helps to keep the person or organization in the public’s mind, which is always a good thing.