How To Write A Press Release
And score free publicity on TV, Radio, Newspapers, Magazines & online
Guest Article Sue Papadoulis
Using public relations (PR) is the fastest, easiest and least expensive way to build your brand, increase your customer base, explode your sales and give you expert status. Don’t overlook going after free publicity in the media –it is far more extensive and influential than a paid for advertisement. Here‘s my 10-step plan to writing a great media release that will get noticed.
1.Get the layout right: You need:
- a headline in bold
- followed by an opening sentence in bold
- followed by text that supports your headline and opening sentence
- followed by your contact details
2.Create a great headline:Just as in a newspaper article, the headline must sum up the media release contents in a concise manner. Keep it to one short sentence.
3.Write a snappy opening sentence.Your opening sentence can be just as important as the headline in attracting interest from a journalist who may scan this alone and determine whether or not the entire story is of interest. Remember, also these words are also indexed by search engines so if you’re putting your release online, add some key words.
4.Support your headline and opener with quality text:The remaining text supports your story and must answer the questions of who, what, when, where, how and why. Write the text in the format used by your target media outlet. For example if you’re targeting a local paper, write it as a newspaper article -the sure sign of a great media release is when you read it word for word in the paper.
5.Use quotations.Quote yourself high up in the release -in the second or third sentence. Keep quotes short, sharp and newsworthy (often referred to by the media as a ‘grab’ which summarises the main point of the story).
6.Include an expert if possible. If you can find a third party to support your position it will give you and your release instant credibility and move it away from being a promotional piece into the realm of serious news story.
7.Provide full contact details.Include your name, landline, mobile phone number, email address and web address.
8.Keep it to one page.More than 1.5 pages and a journalist just won’t read it.
9.Offer images and make yourself available for an interview.Often, a journalist will want to do an interview rather than lifting quotes directly from a media release. A media outlet may be happy to use your images, or they may want to take photographs themselves, so make yourself available.
10.Send it out!Develop a list of targeted media outlets, and don’t overlook online PR release sites such as www.free-press-release.comand www.prweb.com.
Learn more on How To Write A Press Release.