A content writer explains how to write a successful press release
A press release is the best way to communicate with media journalists, whether for newspapers, magazines and journals, radio or TV channels. However, there is a standard and appropriate way to write them to catch the attention of a receiving journalist.
The aim of a press release is to quickly, and reliably, inform the editor what the story you are submitting is all about, which an editor will see at a glance.
Bear in mind they receive hundreds of submissions daily, and they need to know after reading the first line whether it is worth reading further and if it will suit their publication.
How can my press release be seen as different?
Write your release without waffle. Give succinct information about all the salient points to win their favour at the outset. A journalist will instinctively know that if something jumps out to him or her as different, and it is likely the readers will have the same reaction. A website copywriter London who is trained in press release writing should be able to advise you at a far cheaper rate than a PR company.
What should you include in the content?
The story you are submitting must be newsworthy. This may mean that what may appear exciting news to you, may not be quite so exciting to others. There is no point sending what you think is news about your new product if you are simply promoting yourself and your release reads like an advert. The journalist who receives it will probably feel like sending you over to the classified ads section. Your news must also be up to date so forget sending news about an event that happened weeks ago. If something happened in the past, it is stale news.
Perhaps you could tell the journalist how your new product or service will affect people in his newspaper distribution area. Do you have new information to tell him, does it concern a section of the community? You might want to talk about an event that is about to happen or a campaign that is about to launch or someone has achieved something new as a result of using your service?
Human interest is the biggest single factor that will determine if a press release is accepted or rejected. Can you involve a known personality in whatever situation you are talking about? Can you get the local Mayor or someone representing the local council or political party involved? Are there any minor celebrities living in your area who may be interested and can you interview them? Can you get a quote?
Press releases for the media are not a straightforward piece of writing and take professional skill and experience to get right. Whilst a PR consultancy may charge a high rate for this knowledge, you can often commission a freelance web copywriter to write a good release for you at a fraction of the cost.
For more information on writing press releases, contact Sandy at SEJ m: 07985 249 964