Last week I wrote about Public Relations. Specifically, what it is and why business owners should include a PR strategy in their marketing plan. This week, it’s all about the Press Release!
One of the key elements of a good PR strategy is the writing and submission of press releases.
A press release can be written anytime something newsworthy happens in your business. That could be a milestone (five years in business), an event (speaking to a crowd of 1000 in Malibu next month), a book launch (expert coach launches tell-all memoir), or anything else that might be of interest to the public. Things like a new website design, an updated logo, a change in your hours of operation, or a new team member don’t need their own press release. A mention across your social media channels will do just fine.
So, when you’ve identified something newsworthy happening in your business, it’s time to write a press release (or hire someone *ahem* to do that for you).When something newsworthy happens in your business, it's time to write a press release!Click To Tweet
The 7 elements of a basic press release:
- Strong headline. This is a must. If you don’t have a catchy headline, your press release might not get picked up. Try to keep it short; and if you’re going to submit your release online, try to include a keyword.
- Concise summary. Include a summary line or paragraph saying what your press release is about. You’re not writing a crime novel here, so it’s okay to give everything away in the summary! If you can, include the “5 Ws” (who, what, when, where, why) in the summary. For instance: Best Selling Author (Who), reveals her secret writing formula (What) this coming July 4 (When) in California (Where) to inspire a new crop of romance writers (Why). This not only gives the media a clear picture about why this is news, but also helps you frame the content of your press release.
- Informative body. Try to include those same 5 Ws in the first paragraph of your press release so your reader knows right away what the scoop is. Again, try to include keywords throughout the release if you’ll be submitting it online (which is an excellent way to get exposure and visibility). It’s also good practice to include a link or two, just don’t include too many.
- Quotes from different perspectives. Include a quote or two to provide some different perspectives in your press release. Using the example of our author speaking in California; you might include a quote from her, as well as one from someone who has already attended one of her events.
- Call to action. As with everything else you write, you should always end with a strong call to action. Whether it’s a website to visit for information, a number to call, an email address, or an invitation to visit you in person, tell the reader what you want them to do next.
- Contact block. Don’t forget to let people know how to get in touch with you! Include a contact name, phone number, email address, physical address if relevant, and website address.
- Photo or video. If you have a photo or video that works with your story, include that too.
Well there you have it. That’s it! All the elements you need to put together a fabulous press release.
Submitting your press release is a different story, and will depend on your type of business. Feel free to contact us for information about how to get that press release into the hands of key people!