Press releases are often not even read and discarded by journalists as they see numerous press releases everyday and if your written release does not appeal them instantly, the fate of the release is as same as of any other one. To ensure that your release does not fall in the same category it is essential that you follow some guidelines, following which not only can you write a good press release, you can also catch the attention of journalists and bloggers as well.
1. Make Your Headline Stand Out
A lot of emphasis is given on the starting of a press release which is not wrong, however the headline which comes first is of equal importance too. When journalist stream through the numerous press releases on a daily basis, it is the headline that catches attention and make them stop to actually read the whole content. Your headline should be capable of explaining your whole story. If it catches attention, you are through.
2. Use Pictures
It is a general rule that to sell something, you should show it first. Using pictures to support your material goes a long way. If you are distributing your release try attaching pictures that define your story. If in case you are emailing, attach a link to the picture and give detailed information regarding it as well.
3. Provide Statistics
Providing statistics with your story is a quick attention grabber. If you can give numbers or percentages related to your story, your release will be picked instantly and may attract quite a few journalists.
4. Make it Concise
A press release should contain the main points of your story and should not be filled with the entire tit bits. Leave the details out and let the interested ones contact you for them, However complete story should be provided without filling in unnecessary details.
5. Add in Humour
You can add a touch of humour to your release to attract journalists, however it should not feel cheesy. It should be remembered that humor is strictly subjective in nature and pays exceptionally well in industries that are not known humour wise. A famous caption “proud as peanuts, in a chocolate swirl” is a captivating humorous idea to make a release stand out.
6. Make it Newsciting
Shape your release as a news. Add all the ‘W’s in it stating the What, Why, Who, Where and When possibly in the first paragraph.
7. Write a Concise First Paragraph
The first paragraph of the release should define all that you intend to say in the press release. It should be the first draft of your release. If you can define the headline of a release within 140 characters you can define the whole story in a paragraph as well.
8. Avoid Quotes
If you survey press releases, you will notice that quotes are either missing or are the same in all. Since journalists don’t use your quotes simply try to avoid using them, or use something that is related and new.
9. Introduce Bullet Points
Very few press releases contain bullet points, however they help in breaking the information present in your release along with providing a quick general idea of what it contains. You can attract readers through introducing something like “5 things in this release”.