BUSINESS WRITING LESSON: How to Write a Press Release
What is a Press Release?
A press release is also known as a news release, press statement, video release, or media release. It is a concise and compelling news story that is intended to target certain members of the media.
The goal is to spark the interest of a publication or a journalist. A quality press release contains the following essential information: who, what, when, where, how, and why. A good press release is going to read similar to a news story.
Essential Tips for Writing a Press Release
The content of a press release should always be considered newsworthy. The Press Release (PR) will be picked up by journalists and news editors worldwide so its essential that you have a distinct message deliver.
Start out by telling the reader the importance of reading the press release.
The first ten words should be effective and powerful (they are the most important). Think of the opening lines is a headline news story that you would read in your daily newspaper.
Use simple language. A press release should never be filled with verbosity. Use “Plain English” wherever possible and avoid clichés such as “Last but not least”. In addition, be very careful when using industry specific jargon and ensure that your intended audience will understand such terms. Also avoid the excessive use of adjectives.
Stick to the facts. A press release is meant to be informative.
Include as much contact information as possible. This includes the name of the business, the number, media contact, address, etc.
Include an “About Us” paragraph: 2 or 3 informative sentences at the end of the press release. Many newswires will not accept a press release without these details
Press releases should always be written in third person and in a journalistic style.
Why is a Press Release Beneficial?
Any business or working professional can benefit from a press release. This is largely because it is a relatively inexpensive way to gain exposure. It is also a great way for a person to establish himself or herself as an expert within a specific industry.
A press release is also a perfect technique for getting information to a wider target audience and acquiring new customers. Investors like to use press releases to keep informed about certain businesses and organizations.