There are many Do’s and Don’ts of writing press releases (below see the fun Infographic from Skadeedle). In my opinion, the number one “Don’t” is writing too much in one release. Here is why it happens and how you can avoid this major press release don’t.
Many business owners want to include every detail about their company or product in one press release. This is understandable – the company and/or product is their “baby,” and it’s great, so who wouldn’t want to know everything about it?
Well, the answer is the media doesn’t want to know everything. They want to know the one new thing, and then have the ability to find out more as needed. A well-written press release has ONE angle and a focus. The press release exists to release one story to the media and (now) to the online world through online press release distribution sites. (Google loves press releases.) So, it is really key to write concisely and focus on your one story – your company received an award, is having an event, has landed a major new customer contract, or is launching a new product.
Put all the critical facts about your story (date, location, names, and what the press release is announcing) in the first paragraph with a link to a relevant page or your website. Include one quote from a key individual in the story in the second paragraph. Then provide more detail about the story. What are the benefits? How is the product used? What will attendees get at the event?
Include a boilerplate paragraph about your company next. Factual, brief and concise, including when it was founded, what it’s purpose is, perhaps what major services and products you offer. Provide your company website address if you didn’t in the first paragraph. If the press release includes news about another company or product, include a brief boilerplate paragraph about that company, too. You can usually find these in existing press releases on the company’s website.
I like to keep press releases to one page with lines spaced at 1.5. This gives the readers a little room to easily read the release – it’s not just dense text that overwhelms the eye. It’s not always possible to keep the release to one page, but it’s a good goal to have.
For more Do’s and Don’ts on press releases, see Skadeedle’s infographic below. If you need help writing and distributing press releases, give us a call. It’s a great marketing tactic that shows your company has newsworthy things going on and is dynamic.