When you think of a press release, how do you know it's effective? Thousands of press releases get sent out into the world every day; the unfortunate truth is too many of these land on deaf ears and blank eyes.
It's too bad because an effective press release or news release is a powerful cornerstone in any content marketing strategy to get media coverage. Press releases are an excellent way to get the information you need to know in front of a media source or news outlets - along with the target audiences on the web or on social media - that need to read them.
Looking for some proof? Check out these statistics:
Whether press releases are for project launches, personnel changes, philanthropic endeavors, event announcements, or anything else that's newsworthy, they need to have the information - and the hook - that gets them noticed.
So what are the signs of an effective press release? Let's break them down here.
Have an Engaging Title and Subheading
You can't have a great press release without a fantastic title and subheading. The title should be concise and engaging, containing the essential facts that the press release needs to get across; below that, a "subheading" underneath the title (in a font size slightly smaller) should fill in other important details. For example, an event should get announced in the title, and the date and time should be in the subheading. Many people won't read beyond the title and the big, bold text upfront. Make sure they know the most critical information.
Start Your Text With the Important Contact Information
The next important building block of an effective press release? Put the vital contact information somewhere upfront (either before or after the title, depending on your formatting or service). Make sure this contact information goes directly to someone that can answer any press or public questions about the event; it should include their email address, title, and phone number.
Have the "Hook" in the Opening Paragraph...
Start your main text with the "hook" - the thing that makes your event, product launch, or announcement so unique. Don't be afraid to be boastful and a touch grandiose here; words like "groundbreaking" or "innovative" work well when writing down your hook. Additionally, make sure you include a few words describing the press release source - but not too much. Leave long-winded descriptions for the boilerplate at the end (we'll get to that). Just give a few words summarizing the source of the press release.
...and Follow it Up With a Quote
Try to include a quote from the source as high up in the document as possible. This quote - you can make it up and then run it past the source for approval - should speak about the importance of the press release's topic in a personal, confident, reassuring way. Adding a quote gives a touch of humanity to what could otherwise be a very standard exercise.
End Your Press Release With a Boilerplate
All organizations should have their "boilerplate" - a paragraph or two outlining their mission statement, history, and more - handy. That should go at the end of a press release, along with a call to action for readers to visit a pertinent website.
How Scripted Can Help
All five of those building blocks are the signs of an effective press release - the things a good journalist will always look out for.
As outlined in this blog, writing a press release takes a particular skill. It takes experience and knowledge to do the research, pen the quotes, and gather the effective information that the best press releases feature.
It's a job that many people can do - but most shouldn't do. Writing a great press release is best left for the professionals, the people who know how to write concisely, include important information, and integrate the tips and tricks that get a press release noticed by the people who need to see it.
That means that you need to find professional help for your press release needs. The other benefit of finding professional freelance writing help for your press releases? You get to save plenty of time - taking your focus off writing and editing and focusing on your business's other important aspects.
The best place to find top press release writers on the web? That's Scripted - with the internet's top database of press release writers. Here's how it works:
Join Scripted to gain access to the site's thousands of expert press release writers - with your first month ALWAYS free.
Describe your needs and create a project through the platform's simple interface, or assign your press release project to one of your favorite writers.
Review your job proposals from our writers' pool and start with the pitches you like the best.
Receive your first draft within a week. You can either accept that draft immediately or request a round of edits. Our in-line review and approval platform makes feedback and revisions simple and easy.
Keep it going. After you get done with that first press release, go ahead and get started on another one! The more content you distribute, the better the chances are that your work gets noticed.
Don't keep all of the great news coming out of your organization under wraps - sign up with Scripted and start getting the word out to the people that need to know!