There are a few tried and true tips when it comes to writing a press release that you should know. These tips can give your release a better chance of success in getting picked up by the press and announced to the world!
Journalists receive hundreds of press releases every week and yours must be the one that catches their eye and ends up in print. To achieve this try sticking to these tips and don’t give up after just one release, keep writing and eventually your business will be the story of the week!
Need Help? Try these Australian Press Release sites.
PRWire Free Service
Prlog Free Service
If you’d like to write your own release and send it to the media yourself, remember, everything, including your contact information, after the release date and before the footer will be made public.
The reason you write the release is this – you want to tell the world about your service, product, new business etc. Just telling people this is not a newsworthy angle. Journalists want to create a story, ‘buzz’ around your release so you need to give it to them.
If you are launching a new business then wrap the story around the need for your new business. Is the economy flagging and your business can help someone in some way?
You must write from the journalists perspective – they are looking for a story that their readers will want to read. Readers usually need something solved for them.
Newsworthy angles include but are not limited to:
- A new development in your business
- Starting or launching a new business or service
- Winning an award for your business
- A human interest angle that can relate to a social issue involving your business
- A local community angle for local press releases
- A timely topic will receive the highest priority
- Emerging trends in your business or industry
You’ll experience the most success with a customised angle that hasn’t been widely covered already in the press. When writing your release consider the impact that any current or future trends have on your local community. Link your predictions to formal resources and promote one-of-a-kind services. Promote issues that help your business stand out among competitors and emphasise your uniqueness.
2. Format Correctly
To minimise the chances of your release being thrown out by journalists stick to this formatting.
- The words MEDIA RELEASE at the top of the page
- The subject line – Usually the same as the headline – must be ‘catchy’ and relevant.
- The next line of your press release should state “FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE” (This should be in capitals) If you want the release to be released on a certain date then the words “EMBARGO UNTIL” with the date and time at the top of the page.
- The headline is the title of your press release and it should be centered. Keep the headline short – under ten words if possible. A subheading can be below this.
- The city (in capitals) and the date that the press release is issued. ie: BRISBANE, QUEENSLAND – August 12, 2013.
- The text of the release should adhere to standard writing guidelines
- Organise the facts in your lead paragraph around who, what, when, where, why and how
- A good release should have 3 basic elements: facts; timeliness; newsworthiness
- The story’s angle should be presented in the first paragraph
- The second paragraph will go into more detail on the angle
- Write in the 3rd person
- Use only 1 page
- The press release must remain objective
- Don’t try and sell in the release
- Don’t express personal opinions or ideas, unless in quotes
- Refrain from using words like; ‘I’ and ‘We’
- You only have a small amount of information on the release so make it ‘punchy’. The aim is to get the journalist to your website or call for more information.
- Keep your release to under 350 words if you can – the shorter, the better.
- You have to write a ‘story’. The journalist is not interested in getting people to your site or helping you make money. They want a story that will interest their readers. Take your ego out of it and give them the basis they want for a good story.
- The first or ‘lead’ paragraph must include the who, what, when, where and how of the release. The journalist should have everything he needs to get started on a story just from this paragraph alone.
- The rest of the release backs up what is in the first paragraph with facts. This is a good place to use quotes that support your story.
- Don’t forget to put links to your website, media kit and email address at the bottom of the release.
- Do not include any images on or with your release – link to them.
- Provide “Quotes”. This provides journalists with clear, written statements
Have at least one active link in your release – Online press releases can contain multiple anchor text links to your website, which can generate powerful inbound links which will optimise your search engine optimisation efforts.
Include your keywords in your headline. This is critical to target Google Alerts.
Google Alerts sends emails to those interested in the same keywords – your target market!
Apart from a href (hyperlink reference) tag, try not to use html in the press release. This is because the release might be syndicated to many sites and can result in being incorrectly displayed.
To avoid spammers getting your email address refrain from adding it to the release.
Finish off the copy with the words ‘Ends’
Contacts: Place contact details after ‘Ends’. Include your name, email address, contact phone number and website details if applicable.
Sources, if any.
Your Online Media Kit can also be linked to here as well as any images you have to go with the review.
Here’s a sample of one of our own press releases
Insert Logo Here
your website url address here
For Immediate Release (Insert Date Here)
All About Biz Announces One Stop Business Support for Small Australian Business
(You can add a sub heading here)
Insert date of release here
All About Biz, a new online business resource for small Australian business today announced that they have now entered the online information market with a new, multi faceted, user friendly website experience. All About Biz will engage their members with a new standard in small business information and promotional support that encompasses not only promotion but also networking and information.
Small business owners will benefit by having many useful resources in the one website for no fees. With more people starting businesses from home and over half a million small Australian businesses using the Internet for business information (Australian Bureau of Statistics 2007) the need for online business guidance is a deserving field.
“We’ve been developing this idea over the past twelve months and our research shows small Australian businesses need a “one stop shop” to save them time and money” says Cheryl Beasley, co owner of All About Biz.
Resources including small business promotional opportunities, quick resources, member-to-member business networks and product reviews are usually sourced through separate means but all can be utilised through All About Biz.
“By working with the small business community we can accelerate the delivery of a resource that will develop exponentially and set a new standard in the deliverance of business information to small Australian businesses,” adds Rashelle McConville, co owner.
For more information on All About Biz visit their website http://www.allaboutbiz.com.au
Contact: contact name
PH: 07 XXXX XXXX
Email address here
Website URL here