Press release writing requires a completely different approach from writing in other formats. Aside from the technical differences in formatting a press release, there are also stylistic matters to take into consideration before launching in to writing your release. Unfortunately, there is seldom any valuable advice available for the would be press release writer, with the professionals eager to keep their secrets close to their chest. In this article, we're going to buck the trend, and let you know exactly what you need to do to write a killer press release for the benefit of your business.
The first thing to consider when gearing up to write a press release is the format you are going to use. Formatting a press release isn't like formatting any other piece of writing, and there are specific elements which must usually be in place in order to streamline your release. Traditionally, press releases would land on the desk of busy journalists, and quickly become buried under a ton of other stories, notes and papers.
What that means is that from the writing perspective, you've got to make sure everything is in place, as it should be, to prevent it being discarded straight off. Firstly, you need a big, bold headline for your release. While volumes have been written on coming up with a great headline, there really is no secret formula. Whatever you come up with must importantly be in a news tone, and capture the interest of the person first reading it. So, for example, 'My Company Is Getting Ready To Launch A Product' won't do much for your release, or your business.
However, simply rewording the same message to read 'My Company On Verge Of Revolutionary Product Launch' will instantly grab you more attention for your message. Next, you must create a summary that covers the general idea of your release, again concisely letting the reader know exactly what he needs to know within the first few vital seconds. In formatting terms, this paragraph should generally be in italics, for separation purposes. This should contrast with the bold font in the heading, and normal style text in the body. The summary is again sharp and to the point in a news style, but sheds some more light on the headline, leaving the reader in no doubt as to what you're about to say.
The body of the release should revolve around what you have to say. Your body must actually be newsworthy, because at the end of the day no one is really interested in old hat. Make sure you emphasise what is newsworthy about your story and why, to guarantee the best chance of inclusion in your chosen media. Further to that, you should include a resource section, which gives a third person account of relevant background information about your company or product or services. Finally, round it off with your contact details, including direct telephone number and extension where applicable to complete your punchy, profitable, press release.
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