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September 29, 2008

What the heck is a press release , anyway?

A press release or media release, as it is also called, is a condensed article that is written in a journalistic style. The purpose of the news release is to highlight what is interesting and newsworthy about your company or organization.

Press release publishing offers many benefits to your business, and is a powerful marketing tool in any integrated marketing plan.

Traditionally, a press release is short lived, it has a limited amount of time make your impact on the media before it becomes old news and is replaced by fresh press releases. This is NOT scary…It’s just like writing any other piece of info. Make the press release JUST one page.

The really cool thing is that if you submit it to the correct places, you may get a phone call requesting an interview!! This is huge for your business and website. It’s surprising just how easy (and FREE) it is to submit a press release to put your home business out there to the public!!

Press Release Example and Template

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:

CONTACT:

Contact Person

Company Name

Voice Phone Number

FAX Number

Email Address

Website URL

XYZ, Inc. Announces Widget to Maximize Customer Response Rate

This headline is one of the most important components of the press release as this needs to “grab the attention” of the editor. (Just like any other article or blog post or video)

It should be in bold type and a font that is larger than the body text. Preferred type fonts are Arial, Times New Roman, or Verdana. Keep the headline to 80-125 characters maximum. Capitalize every word with the exception of “a”, “the” “an” or any word that is three characters or less.

City, State,Date – Your first paragraph of the release should be written in a clear and concise manner. The opening sentence contains the most important information; keep it to 25 words or less. Never take for granted that the reader has read your headline. It needs contain information that will “entice” the reader. Remember, your story must be newsworthy and factual; don’t make it a sales pitch or it will end up in the trash. Pretend like you are the reporter. What would an objective reporter write?

Answer the questions “who”, “what”, “when”, “where”, “why” and “how”. Your text should include pertinent information about your product, service or event. If writing about a product, make sure to include details on when the product is available, where it can be purchased and the cost. If you’re writing about an event, include the date, location of the event and any other pertinent information. You should include a quote from someone that is a credible source of information; include their title or position with the company, and why they are considered a credible source. Always include information on any awards they have won, articles they’ve published or interviews they have given.

Keep your sentences and paragraphs short; a paragraph should be no more than 3-4 sentences. Your release should be between 500 to 800 words, written in a word processing program, and spell checked for errors. Don’t forget to proofread for grammatical errors. The mood of the release should be factual, not hyped; don’t use a sales pitch as it will ruin your credibility with the reader.

The last paragraph before the company information should read: For additional information on (put in the subject of this release), contact “name” or visit www.yoururl.com. If you offer a sample, copy or demo, put the information in here. You can also include details on product availability, trademark acknowledgment, etc. in this area of the release.

ABOUT (COMPANY) – Include a brief description of your company along with the products and services it provides.

– END – At the end of the release, you need to indicate that the release is ended. This lets the journalists know they have received the entire release. Type “End” on the first line after your text is completed. If your release goes over one page, type “MORE” at the bottom of the first page. For a great example of a press release that I recently put out, go to this link: http://www.prlog.org/10122195-in-this-uncertain-economy-small-businesses-are-saying-no-to-expensive-advertising.html

So, when is it a good time to put out a press release? ANYTIME! Have you thought about hiring your first employee? Have you come up with some kind of compelling reason to get people to your website (newsletter, free samples of your product)? Did you buy a state of the art printer and you’re now putting out full color brochures? Did you finally get your baby potty-trained…okay, maybe not ANYTHING. You’ll have great results with press releases, especially with the PAID submission services. Sorry cheapos! Usually you get what you pay for.


Dan Dimit – If you’d like more information on driving free traffic to your website, please visit http://www.thefreetrafficformula.com

2 Responses to “What the heck is a press release , anyway?

    […] Wh­at­ t­h­e h­eck­ is a press release , an­­y­way&#173… « Top Blog Directories to Submit Your Blog to […]

    avatar Komuniq8 says:

    A very useful article on a great tool for marketing that is quite often overlooked.
    Thanks again for the helpful tips.

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