Press Releases

A Brief Press Release Guide for Beginners

Team Pepper
Team Pepper
Posted on 3/02/226 min read
A Brief Press Release Guide for Beginners

Table of Contents 

  • What Is a Press Release? 
  • Why Are Press Releases Important in 2022? 
  • What Are the Contents of a Press Release? 
  • How to Write a Good Press Release
  • Key Takeaways
  • Conclusion
  • FAQs

Press releases are a great way to get the word out about what you’re doing. Think of it as an advertisement for your story; you want to lure people in, not scare them off. Press releases are an old-school way of getting publicity, but they can still work quite well. And they’re reasonable too. You can go about writing press releases by yourself, but if you have the resources to recruit public relations (PR) professionals, you will get better results. You may even make some friends along the way!

So what exactly is a press release? This blog acts as a press release guide, and provides you with essential tips on how to write a good press release.

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What Is a Press Release?

Press releases are written to inform media outlets about a newsworthy event. These events can be positive, such as the launch of a new product or service, or negative, such as a company’s recent layoff.

As with any document, it’s important that press releases are well-written and clear. They need to be concise and compelling in order to attract the attention of the media, and gain attention. Press releases should be well-organized and easy-to-read. The first paragraph is crucial; it should include the most relevant information and use engaging language to draw readers in. The rest of the release should have a logical flow, with supporting information presented in an organized manner.

Press releases should also be accurate. Journalists who receive inaccurate or misleading information may not give your business or organization fair coverage, so it’s important that you provide accurate information that is easily verified. Also, make sure to include credible sources for the facts you provide.

Lastly, press releases should include a contact name and telephone number for more information about the subject covered in the release, and for questions from journalists about your business or organization. 

Think about who is likely to be interested in your news before you talk to the media. If there is no way of knowing, you are probably better off talking to no one than talking to the wrong people. Here are a few entities you can write a press release for.

  • Local businesses 
  • Leads
  • Influencers
  • Business partners
  • Vendors
  • Competitors
  • Thought leaders in your industry
  • Journalists and editors 
  • Bloggers 

Why Are Press Releases Important in 2022?

A press release can help you get the word out about a new product launch, a big new store opening, an exciting new hire, or any other news that you want to share with the world.

Your business may already have its own website and social media channels like Facebook and Twitter, but if you’re looking for more exposure, writing a press release is a great way to get it. Here are a few more benefits of writing press releases. 

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  • They can help build your company’s identity and credibility.
  • They can get you eyeballs from various magazines, newspapers, and blogs. 
  • They can drive organic traffic to your website. 

What Are the Contents of a Press Release?

When drafting a press release, you must include the following elements. 

  • Headline: a catchy headline should form a part of your press release.
  • Date: the date should be mentioned in the first line of your press release.
  • Introduction: a brief introduction about the press release should be present in order for it to qualify as a good press release.
  • Body: the body should consist of 2-3 paragraphs explaining all the details. 
  • Boilerplate: this is a brief about your company, its mission, vision, and objectives.
  • CTA: a good press release always has a compelling CTA. 
  • Contact details: you must end your press release with accurate contact details.

How to Write a Good Press Release

Here are the steps that you need to follow while writing a good press release

1. Find something newsworthy

People love it when there is something new to know about. Therefore, the first step would be to find something newsworthy, in order to grab everyone’s attention and compel bloggers or journalists to write about it. The best way to get press coverage is to do something that is newsworthy, but not just any kind of newsworthy. You must do something the press cares about.

Media outlets are always looking for stories that are important, surprising, and entertaining.

An important story means something that affects a lot of people or teaches us something about ourselves. Surprising stories can make people look at the world in a different light. Entertaining stories, on the other hand, mean something funny, dramatic, or scandalous (but not mean-spirited). 

2. Build your hook from the beginning

In most cases, you want to find something interesting about your company or product, and then you want to turn that detail into a newsworthy hook. In other words, pick out the plain words and add emotions to them. A solid hook comprises the following elements. 

  •  It speaks to your reader’s interests.
  • It has the element of surprise.
  • It is newsworthy.
  • It is easy-to-understand.
  • It offers interesting information.
  • It describes what the story is about. 

3. Write a powerful headline

We know what you’re thinking: “But they’re journalists! They’re supposed to be literate, and   they’re supposed to be curious. Why should I have to craft a headline that appeals to them?” The reason is simple: unless you write a headline that works, the journalist will most probably not read your press release. And if they don’t read it, they can’t possibly write a story about you.

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The truth is, most journalists are busy. They receive hundreds of press releases every day. And unless yours stands out as fascinating, fun, or meaningful in some way, they’ll probably just delete it. So take a minute and write a killer headline for your press release by following these two simple steps. 

  • Identify what is going to hook your reader (you can use the tactics mentioned above to find that.) 
  • The next step is to use the hook as your headline. 

4. Write a compelling lead

The lead is the first thing a journalist reads in your press release. And it’s what gets them interested enough to read beyond it. Telling readers right away why they should care about your story will help them decide whether to keep reading your release.

Don’t bury this crucial information at the end of the first paragraph (where readers are likely going to miss it). Instead, position it right on the top. 

Right now, the reader is just getting started on your press release. It’s like saying to someone, “Hey, I have an idea for a book about a small-town kid who wants to join his high school football team. But I don’t have time to tell you what it’s about because I have to finish writing it!”

In other words: Don’t start with meaningless phrases like “XYZ Corporation today announced…” or “XYZ Corporation has developed…” It should capture the interest of the reader from the get-go.

5. Give it some final touches

In the final step, you’ll review what you’ve created so far and add a few final touches to your press release. By this point, you’ve already written most of the things that will go into your press release.

We’re sure you’re excited to see your press release go live. But there are a few things you should consider before sending it off to your newswire service for distribution. Here are a few things that you should keep in mind before hitting “send”. 

  • Multimedia
  • Statistics
  • Your contact information
  • Company information

6. Edit well

Last but not the least, edit it rigorously. Cut out all the unnecessary portions from it. Keep the press release crisp and easily comprehensible. 

Here’s how a press release should look like.

Key Takeaways

  • Telling a story is a great way to communicate information to audiences. It’s much easier to remember what you read in a story than if you were just reading a list of facts or statistics. 
  • The goal of a press release is to tell your company’s story, and the best way to do that is in a narrative form.
  • A good press release should include a few key elements: a catchy headline that grabs attention; a concise description of your company’s news; a quote from an expert or industry leader who can validate your news; and a quote from the founder about how the news has impacted the market or industry. 
  • Make sure to add links to any relevant product, resource, or content updates related to your news. 
  • The lead and hook are two of the most important elements of a press release. 
  • Always make it a point to edit your press release before sending it out.

Conclusion

A press release is an important tool for companies to use when they want to get publicity for a new product, service, or event. In order to ensure the release captures the attention of the media, it needs to be well-written and relevant to the topic.

Press releases are written to inform media outlets about a newsworthy event. The purpose of a press release is to persuade media outlets that they need to report on the topic. From the above press release guide, it is clear that your job is to make it easy for reporters who are looking for ways to write your story. 

The release provides essential information about the topic, and can also include quotes from officials involved in the event. To get the media’s attention, you need to learn how to write a good press release. When you hear the word “press” in the phrase “press release,” think of it as a shortened form of “press agent.” Treat your press release like you would an ad for your business: make it eye-catching and easy-to-read. 

FAQs

1. What does a good press release look like?

A press release is a short, written statement that informs the media about a newsworthy event. Press releases are usually written by PR professionals and contain information about the subject of the release. A press release can be formal or informal. The tone will depend on the type of media outlet it is intended for.

2. Who writes a press release?

A press release is usually written by PR professionals.

3. What should be the ideal length of a press release?

An ideal press release should be around 300-400 words, and 3-4-paragraphs long. Plus, it should be extremely crisp and to-the-point. 

4. What is a good press release made of?

To write a good press release, you need to learn to focus on what is actually interesting, throwing out all the extraneous details. The goal of a press release is to get the journalist to run the story. 

5. What are the three qualities of a good press release?

A good press release has these three qualities- 
1. Conciseness 
2. Catchy headline
3. Strong CTA

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