Writing Press Releases The Right Way

Writing Press Releases The Right Way.

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Writing Press Releases The Right Way

Writing Press Releases - Part 1 : Headlines
A headline is text at the top of a press release, indicating the nature of the news below it. Headlines are written in bold and is much larger in size that the press release text. The general headlines conventions include using present tense and omitting "a" and "the" as well as forms of the verb "to be" in certain contexts.

The press release headline should be brief, clear and to the point. In case of press releases, generally it would have an announcement tone to describe the latest achievement of the company, the recent event of the company, product or service announcement, partnership announcement and so on. For example, "XYZ Company announces strategic partnership with ABC Company in India & Us".

The first word in the press release headline should be capitalized as should all proper nouns. Most headline words appear in lower-case letters. Do not capitalize every word.

You must include the company name in the headline for better visibility in search engines and for journalists and readers convinience.
Treat press release headline as the ultra-compact version of the entire press release content. But at the same time, keep it simple, clear and short.
The simplest method to arrive at the press release headline is to extract main points (highlights) and then the most important keywords from your press release. Now from these keywords, try to frame a logical & attractive statement. Using keywords will give you better visibility in search engines and it would be simpler for journalists and readers to get the idea of the press release content.
Writing Press Release - Part 2 : Press Release Body / Copy
A press release is simply a written statement distributed to the media. It is a fundamental tool of PR work. Press release is a factual and a newsworthy statement. The press release should be written as you want it to appear in a news story. The other word for press release in news release. The press release content/copy should be compact. Avoid using very long sentences and paragraphs. Avoid repetition and over use of grammer and fancy language.
Press release must deal with actual facts - events, product, service, people, target, goals, plans, projects. Try to provide maximum use of these 'real' facts and contents. The length of a press release should be atleast a page and maximum two or three pages. The more newsworthy you make the press release copy, the chances of it being selected by a journalist or reporting increases. Before writing a press release keep the audience in the mind, people who are likely to be interested in your news release.
A first paragraph or two three sentences must actually sum up the press release and the further content must elaborate it. In fast paced world neither journalists or other readers would read the entire press release if the start of the article doesn't generate interest.
A simple method for writing an effective press release. Make a list of following things :

1) What is the actual news ? 2) Why this THE NEWS ? 3) The people, products, items, dates and other things related with the news. 4) The purpose behind the news 5) Your company - the source of this news.

Now from the points gathered from this 5 steps, try to construct paragraphs and assemble them sequentially for example - The headline > the summary or introduction of the news > event or achievements > product > people > again the concluding summary > the company.

Reasearch the actual press releases on the web for getting the feel of the tone of a press release, the language, the structure and the format of a press release.

Writing Press Release - Part 3 : About The Company

About the company - section is a short information about the company who has actually submitted the press release and about whom the news is all about.

When a journalist picks up your press release for a story, he/she would logically have to mention about the company too in the news article. Journalists can then put the company information from this section.

The title for this section should be - About XYZ_COMPANY

After the title, use paragraph or two to describe your company with 5/6 lines each. The text must desctibe your company, it's core business and the business policy. Many businesses already have a professionaly written brochures, presentations, business plans, etc. - that introductory text can be put up here.

At the end of this section you must point to your website. The link should be the exact & complete URL without any embedding so that, even if this page is printed, the link will be printed as it is. For example : http://www.your_company_website.com/.
Companies which maintain a seperate media page on their websites must point to that URL here. A media page typically has contact information and press kit (PDFs and Logos). After this section - you can provide some extra information links which support your press release or close the press release with the contact information.
Press Release Part 4 : Contact Information

If your press release is really newsworthy, journalists would surely like more information or would like to interview key people associated with it.

If you are comfortable with the idea of letting your key people being directly contacted by media, you can provide their contact details on the press release page itself. For example, in case of some innovation you can provide the contact information of your engineering or research team for the media.
Otherwise, you must provide the details of your MEDIA/PR department in the CONTACT section. If you do not have dedicated team for this function, you must appoint somebody who will act as a link between the media and your people.
The contact details must be limited and specific only to the current press release.
The contact details must include: (1) The Company's Offical Name (2) Media Department's offical Name and Contact Person (3) office Address (4) Telephone & FAX Numbers with proper country/city codes and extension numbers (5) Mobile Phone Number (optional) (6) Timings of availability (7) Email Addresses (8) Website Address.
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