Think of a press release as your ticket to publicity—one that can get your company coverage in all kinds of publications or on TV, radio stations and online websites. Editors and reporters get hundreds of press releases a day, how to make yours stand out?
ONE: Be sure you have a good reason for sending out a press release. A grand opening, a new product/material, a record-setting sales year, a new location or a special event are all good reasons.
TWO: Make sure your press release is appropriately targeted for the publication or broadcast you’re sending it to. It sounds obvious, but many entrepreneurs/people make the mistake of sending press releases at random without considering a publication’s audience.
THREE: To ensure readability, your press release should follow the standard format: typed, double-spaced, on white letterhead with a contact person’s name, title, company, address and phone number made available. Below this information, put a brief, eye-catching headline in bold type. A dateline—for example, “Douala, Cameroon, August 10, 2015—” follows, leading into the first sentence of the release.
FOUR: Limit your press release to one or two pages. It should be just long enough to cover the six basic elements: who, what, when, where, why, and how. The answers to these six questions should be mentioned in order of their importance to the story to save the editor time and space.
FIVE: Don’t embellish or hype the information. Remember, you are not writing the article; you are merely presenting the information and showing why it is relevant to that publication in hopes that they will write about it. Pay close attention to grammar and spelling. Competition for publicity is intense, and a press release full of typos or errors is more likely to get tossed aside.
Some business owners use attention-getting gimmicks to get their press releases noticed. In most cases, this is a waste of money. If your release is well-written and relevant, you don’t need singing telegrams or a bouquet of flowers to get your message across (and most reporters won’t take such shenanigans seriously!).
Part three coming up…stay tuned!
Courtesy of Entrepreneur Media Inc.